Bhutan Solar Initiative Project (BSIP) aims towards achieving a sustainable energy supply for Bhutan through alternative renewable energy sources of solar grid integration. About 60 De-suups have been actively involved in this six-month long project and have gained practical knowledge of installing solar PV systems through hands-on experience.
The project included the installation of Rooftop Solar PV at Centenary Farmer’s Market (CFM) and Ground Mounted Solar Panels at Dechencholing in Thimphu. The first phase of the project completed in May-June, last year.
In total, there are 393 panels at CFM and 784 solar panels at Dechencholing project site, generating approximately, 380000KW hour units in the last 7 months, generating an income of roughly Nu. 2.7 million. One panel can light about 32 light bulbs (of 20watt).
According to the BSIP, the implementation of the solar project brings benefits to the energy sector of Bhutan by diversifying electricity generation sources, in addition to hydropower, and adding energy security to the country. The implementation of solar PV systems, as a climate mitigation effort, have a significant positive impact on the environment, as it is a form of renewable energy generation with the least climate impact. Overall, the nation benefits from the Solar project by offsetting the need to import an equivalent amount of electricity at a higher price during the lean winter months.
The implementation of this project has not only enhanced the capacity of the in- house engineers and De-suups involved but has also instilled confidence in them to venture into solar-related businesses. This will enable them to provide support and services to individuals and organizations interested in installing solar PV systems. By establishing such an ecosystem, the foundation is laid for the development of the solar industry within the country.
This is a special and also the first project supported by Project-related Investment (PRI) program under the BTFEC.