GUWAHATI, June 11 - Maligaon-headquartered Northeast Frontier Railway (NFR) has been able to bring down its energy bill during recent times on account of various �green initiatives� and the zonal railway is now seeking to adopt some more such measures.
NFR officials said that adoption of energy saving LED lights, commissioning of solar panels and use of other energy saving devices have helped bring good results and now major initiatives like declaration of �green corridors� on certain stretches and covering all trains with bio-toilets are to be taken up.
�Green energy initiatives of NFR include use of LED luminaries, more emphasis on solar photovoltaic power plants, more use of energy efficient and BEE rated equipment and distribution of LED lamps under government scheme,� said an official.
Sources said the number of solar panels commissioned till April 30 this year included stand-alone types at 41 level crossing gates with a total capacity of 26.24 Kwp and another 29 locations with grid connections with a total capacity of 980 Kwp.
NFR has also converted 40 stations in the zone into 100 per cent LED ones, including 17 under Katihar Division, eight under Alipurduar Division, six under Rangiya, three under Lumding and six under Tinsukia Division.
�A 700 Kwp solar plant was inaugurated last month at the Guwahati station by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu. There are plans for two solar panels of 50 Kwp capacity at NFR headquarters, besides at 13 locations in Tinsukia, Katihar and Guwahati. Two panels at workshops and also at 33 locations across the NFR are also on the anvil,� sources said.
In addition, plans also afoot for 10 substations with a total capacity of 25 Mwp.
�All these will be under PPA mode and grid connected. Besides, there are plans to set up 50 solar panels of 10 Kwp capacity each in Lumding, Tinsukia and Rangiya divisions, all of which will be of the stand-alone variety,� officials said.
NFR Chief Public Relations Officer (CPRO) Pranav Jyoti Sharma that the 81-km long Chaparmukh-Silghat Town section is planned to be converted into a discharge-free �green corridor� within this month.
�Four more sections � Rangiya-Murkongselek (448 km), Badarpur-Agartala (225 km), Silchar-Jiribam (50 km) and Silchar-Bhairabi (83 km) � are also proposed to be converted into green corridors within this financial year,� he said.
Sharma said that around 3,000 environment-friendly and zero-discharge bio-toilets have been fitted in 865 coaches within NFR. �All coaches are expected to be fitted with bio-toilets by 2019-20,� he said.
Under the Domestic Efficient Lighting Programme (DELP), NFR has set a target to distribute LED lights to its employees, of which 49,884 were distributed last fiscal and another 1,10,116 are to be distributed within the next few months.
Sources said that the electricity bill of NFR has fallen from Rs 988.80 million in 2014-15 to Rs 960.74 million in 2015-16 and further to Rs 948.77 million in 2016-17. Consumption of conventional energy has also shown a decline during this period.