May 7, 2018, 8:19 pm
Panasian Power PLC recently completed three rooftop solar power plants with a combined capacity of 1.2MW. The plants are located in Kolonna, Borelasgamuwa and Kohuwala with capacities of 300kW, 400kW and 500kW, respectively. This takes Panasian Power a step closer towards its goal of generating 12MW from solar by 2019. This is in keeping with the Ceylon Electricity Board’s (CEB) plan to Increase its renewable energy contribution dramatically in line with Sri Lanka’s commitment to the Paris agreement.
Panasian Power, which had previously been solely involved in hydropower, began exploring opportunities in solar in 2017 following the launch of the government’s "Soorya Bala Sangramaya" programme to enhance the renewable energy portfolio of the country. Under this programme Panasian pursued projects in the Net Plus scheme that allowed the company to sell all the electricity generated from the solar rooftop plants to the CEB.
The company has thus far invested over Rs. 200 million in solar and in addition to the three completed projects Panasian Power has four other solar projects in the pipeline in various stages of completion. The plants which are due to complete construction by September this year are located in Kelaniya, Mawathagama, Uhumeeya, and Homagama. Once on grid these plants will have a total capacity of 5.1MW constructed at a cost of Rs 550 million.
Commenting on Panasian’s bold steps into solar Pathmanatha Poddiwala, General Manager/Executive Director said, "We have looked at opportunities in solar for some time now and once the Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy launched their ‘Soorya Bala Sangramaya’ programme, as part of their plan to make Sri Lanka an energy self-sufficient nation by 2030, we decided the time was right to diversify into solar. We were able to build on our extensive knowledge of renewable energy and leverage existing partnerships to act quickly in this space. In addition, our strong financial position has allowed us to invest heavily in the latest technology, equipment and personnel needed to ensure the success of this venture."
Panasian Power, which was incorporated in 2002 owns and operates mini hydropower plants and supplies electricity directly to the Ceylon Electricity Board. In 2017 the company diversified into solar energy to meet its revised target of having an energy portfolio of 30MW by 2020.