Long hours of power cut in the district since 2008 has turned renewable energy attractive to the industries here.

Apart from the investments made in wind mills, the textile and engineering industries have started tapping solar energy too. When power cut duration increased, industries went in for diesel generators.

Though Tamil Nadu is witnessing a windy season

Though it is windy season in the State, wind energy generation is not at the maximum because of evacuation problems, according to K. Kasthoorirangaian, chairman of the Indian Wind Power Association.

Many powerloom owners are exploring alternative energy sources

Thousands of power looms in the villages in Coimbatore district reeled under 10 hours or more of power cut a day even a month ago.

The Integrated Processing Development Scheme, recently announced in the Union Budget for the textile sector, will enable development of new textile processing parks and also improve infrastructure, including effluent treatment facilities, in the existing textile processing centres through public private partnerships.

With an outlay of Rs. 500 crore for the XII Plan period, the scheme looks at leveraging Rs. 5,000 crore investment in the segment. The budget has proposed Rs. 50 crore allocation for 2013-2014. Details of the scheme are expected soon.

Ethiopia plans to sign agreements with some of the textile associations here to attract investments and expertise from the Indian textile industry.

Sisay Gemechu Edo, State Minister in Ethiopia’s Ministry of Industry held a meeting with members of the Southern India Mills’ Association (SIMA) here on Wednesday. He also visited the vendor development programme organised by Coimbatore District Small Industries’ Association and the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institute.

Power cut in the evening or night hours does not engulf the streets of JJ Nagar, a residential area with 120 houses about 10 km from Coimbatore city, in darkness. Nearly 90 per cent of the population here are daily wage earners and do not have uninterrupted power supply systems or generators. But, JJ Nagar has harnessed renewable energy.

A couple of months ago, 10 street lights in the panchayat were connected to a 500 watt solar system.

In the wake of rapid development in areas near the reserve forests in the district and increasing elephant movement into villages, the Forest Department has taken a series of measures recently to ensure that new constructions do not come up in the elephant corridors or affect elephant movement in the forest area.

The department has intimated the appropriate authorities on constructions coming up without its permission in the Hill Area Conservation Act (HACA) notified villages or buildings that are promoted on the agricultural land in the areas close to the forest without getting a “no objection certificate” from the department.

Road widening works saw a large number of trees pulled down on either side of Mettupalayam Road. But, the green cover on the road may be back, if the efforts of the Mettupalayam Road Protection Association pay off.

The association has identified 28 varieties of trees. For 6.5 km from Sanganur Pallam to NGGO Colony, trees will be planted on either side of the road and shrubs will be planted on the median space. The association plans to start the green drive in March this year. It plans to approach the industries on the Mettupalayam Road for support to maintain the trees.

With half to five kg of waste, burn stove for more than two hours

With a cap on the supply of LPG domestic cylinders at subsidised prices, kitchens can make use of alternative options. Some in Coimbatore have done so and also gone green with biogas plants. A simple system that includes two drums, hose, and stove can turn the kitchen and garden waste at home into fuel.

Against the backdrop of long hours of power cut and growing demand for power in the State, Tamil Nadu has come out with “Solar Energy Policy 2012.” The policy envisages 3,000 mega watt of solar power in the State in three years.

Several industrial and commercial consumers are already going in for solar energy generation. For instance, the RVS group of educational institutions here plans to install 600 kilo watt solar systems in six of its colleges. The Solar Energy Policy will now boost solar power generation in all segments and at different scales of generation – roof tops to large capacity plants.