Harnessing Solar Energy for Sustainability

o-SOLAR-POWER-facebook                  The diaspora of solar market is slowly shifting from archetype system to innovative one. Till few years ago solar technology was limited to affluent class, renewable energy enthusiast and people obtaining it as subsidy. But solar trend has changed completely in recent years. The trading business of solar as commodity is shifting towards energy service provider. People were taking advantage of solar system at home individually at high cost intact with limited knowledge and improper operating trends. The situation at rural was even worse as people were fed up with irregular solar functionality lack of access of operation. They even questioned on practicability of solar technology.

                      Roughly 20% of world’s population does not have access to electrical grid. It is costly in Nepal to provide access of electrical grid to people as if geographical diversity and environmental concern. Building grid will disturb pristine beauty of our hills, Himalayas and Terai where Tourism is major source of income for people. The grid won’t be sufficient though another daunting task will be electrifying grids which is near impossible for some certain future. The rural population still relies on expensive, low quality hazardous polluting light source such as candles, battery-powered flash lights, kerosene lamps. The use of solar system has significantly grown over years yet kerosene lamps still serve as the main source of light for many people.

               There are various barriers such as asymmetric information. The general lack of product awareness is preventing people who need and want solar system from obtaining it. The cost or access for financing solar technology among consumers can hinder market penetration. The lack of information about what is available on the market. Not knowing how to determine which products best suits an individual needs. Early wear out of system by improper handling and general distrust among people by same in rural areas.

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             Governmental institutions, line agencies and aids, donors must realize that a subsidGovernmental institutions, line agencies and aids, donors must realize that a subsidy driven market cannot achieve sustainability. We must need to encourage demand driven markets rather than donor driven ones. Banks and Micro-finance should be involved for capital investment. When people start making money from generating solar energy then sustainability takes care of itself. The technical and general operational guidance should be given to consumers for handling and increasing durability of products.

            The paradigm shift on solar business from selling solar as commodity to energy service provider can increase sustainability.The concept of micro grids, nano-grids, productive end use are trending into solar business. They are easy to handle both in financial and technical view-point wise. So solar technology should not be limited to certain user it should be diversified according to best suits. The decreasing cost, able to address current energy needs, roof tied grid system, flexible financing, reliable source encourages harnessing power from solar technology for sustainable growth.

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