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Renewable Energy in Bangladesh


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16 January, 2022, 03:25 pm

Last modified: 16 January, 2022, 03:28 pm

Govt exploring rooftop, floating solar power for scarcity of lands: Nasrul 

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has said that the government is exploring options like rooftop and floating solar power plants as alternatives to land-based ones due to scarcity of lands.   

He said it is not possible to set up land-based large-scale solar plants as lands are being used for agriculture and other necessary purposes.

The state minister made the remarks while presiding over the virtually held "Member Interventions" session of the 12th assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) on Saturday evening.

Stressing the need for international cooperation to address the global energy challenges in a credible manner, he said regional and sub-regional cooperation is also essential in this regard.

He urged all to work together to keep the modern and innovative technologies open for all at an affordable cost.

Nasrul Hamid mentioned that Bangladesh has been making all its efforts with limited resources to promote renewable energy.

"Over 20 million people of the country have been brought under the electricity facilities through setting up over six million solar home systems," he added.

Moreover, people of the remote areas are being given electricity through installing 26 solar mini-grids while 2,000 diesel-run irrigation pumps were converted into solar-run pumps to reduce the use of liquid fuels.

Nasrul said currently the country is generating 650MW electricity from solar energy while eight grid-tied solar parks, having 231MW capacity, were set up across the country.    

He said the government has introduced the net metering system to encourage rooftop solar while initiatives have been taken to use other sources of renewable energy like wind, waste to generate electricity.

Projects were undertaken to generate 245MW of electricity from wind while Dhaka North City Corporation signed a contract to set up a 42.5MW waste to energy plant.

The conference was attended by representatives from Zimbabwe, Colombia, India, US,  el Salvador, Belgium, Norway, Uruguay, Canada, Indonesia, Singapore, Greece, Spain, China, Japan, Switzerland, Croatia, Turkmenistan, Serbia, Germany, France, Italy, Sun Marino, and Saudi Arabia.


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নবায়নযোগ্য, সবুজ জ্বালানির মাধ্যমে ২০৫০ সালের মধ্যে কার্বন নিঃসরণ নিট-জিরোতে নামানোর লক্ষ্যস্থির করেছে সরকার।

দেশে বর্তমানে মোট কার্বন নিঃসরণের ৪৭ শতাংশই করে বিদ্যুৎ খাত।

বর্তমানে দেশের মোট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন ক্ষমতা প্রায় ২৫ হাজার মেগাওয়াট। এই বিদ্যুতের ৯৩ শতাংশই উৎপাদিত হয় জীবাশ্ম জ্বালানি দিয়ে।



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Bangladesh to get its first wind power plant in Cox’s Bazar

The 60MW plant will cost Tk900 crore


Abdul Aziz, Cox’s Bazar

March 31, 2022 2:20 PM

The country's first wind power project is being implemented in Khurushkul of Cox’s Bazar Sadar upazila.

State Minister for Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid laid the foundation stone of the project on Thursday.

The wind power plant would generate 60MW of electricity upon project completion.

Besides, there will be another wind park in Inani capable of generating 50MW of electricity, said State Minister Nasrul.


State Minister for Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid is seen at the inauguration ceremony of a wind park project in Cox’s Bazar on Thursday, March 31, 2022 Dhaka Tribune

The director of the project in Khurushkul, Mukit Alam Khan, said the government is constructing the plant at a cost of Tk900 crore.

The project will reach completion by December, he said, adding that the electricity generated by this plant will be connected to the national grid after meeting local demand.

It is being implemented by US-DK Green Energy (BD) Ltd.

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Eyamin Sajid

22 April, 2022, 01:00 pm

Last modified: 22 April, 2022, 02:56 pm

Rooftop solar now a popular choice for industries to cut power bills

Rooftop solar system offers a ray of light in achieving target despite some shortcomings


Heritage Polymer and Lami Tube Ltd, a factory dealing in PVC pipes, fittings and packaging in Narayanganj's Sonargaon, had been paying a big amount of money to Narayanganj Palli Bidyut Samity-1 every month for electricity consumption until it got a solar park on its rooftop last month.

The factory's electricity bill has now dropped by around 34% with the 3.161 megawatt-peak (MWp) installed capacity of solar power.

In the daytime, the solar system produces electricity from sunlight and feeds the power distribution grid if generation is higher than consumption.

On 1 April this year, Akij Group, one of the leading business conglomerates in the country, also set up a 470kW rooftop solar plant at Janata Jute Mills located in Faridpur's Boalmari.

Rooftop solar thus comes as a popular choice for industries to minimise electricity cost.

As many as 1,703 firms and factories have installed rooftop solar systems under net metering model since 2018 to minimise energy costs and reduce carbon emission.

The government aspires to generate 40% of its total electricity from renewable sources by 2041 even though it now produces only 3% from renewables, such as solar, wind and hydro power.

The rooftop solar system offers a ray of light in achieving the target despite some shortcomings, among which are a lack of adequate land and a low speed wind, said Mahmood Malik, immediate past first executive director and chief executive officer at Infrastructure Development Company Limited (IDCOL). 

The authorities are now trying to make use of the on-grid rooftop solar system to increase the contribution of renewable energy to the total energy mix. 

Power distribution companies are encouraging industrial consumers to set up such projects on unused rooftops. 

Bikash Dewan, managing director at Dhaka Power Distribution Company, said the company is implementing rooftop solar projects based on a yearly target. 

Besides, some local renewable energy promoting agencies, such as IDCOL, Rahimafrooz Bangladesh Ltd and Alpine Technologies, have also come forward to expedite the rooftop solar programme under a cheaper but advanced model. 

Alpine Technologies also provides a flat rate for a contract period of more than 20 years. 

Being a solar energy solution providing company, Alpine Technologies provides both technical and financial feasibility studies, power output projections, electrical designs, combinations with existing substations, control panels, material procurement, quality control, system designs and detailed analyses, and operation and maintenance.

Md Tariqul Islam, CEO of Alpine Technologies, said his firm's model will reduce 30-40% of electricity bills of industrial consumers as the model uses unused or unutilised roof spaces of the industries. 

"This is one of the finest ideas to reduce the power load of the industry along with rolling back carbon emission and raising the green standard of the industry," he said. 

He also said returns from investment on installation of rooftop solar systems are very high, and it does not take more than 5 years to get a payback, said Md Tariqul Islam. 

How an on-grid rooftop solar system works 

If the rooftop owner connects the facility with the national grid through the net metering system, a billing mechanism that credits solar energy facility owners for adding electricity to the grid, the monthly electricity consumption will decrease and so will the bills. 

During daylight hours, electricity generated from a net-metered rooftop PV system will go to the national grid if the generation exceeds the consumer's demand. 

For feeding the national grid, electricity meters will run backwards to provide a credit to users and customers are only billed for their "net" energy use at the end of the month.

Solution offered by Alpine Technologies

To expedite rooftop solar power, Alpine Technologies offers its services in two methods – Capital Expenditure (CapEx) and Operational Expenditure (OpEx). 

In the CapEx model, capital investment is done by end-users. It is the most convenient and simplified model where design and implementation are done by Alpine and its international EPC partner, with the end-users bearing the expenditure of the project.

On the other hand, under the OpEx model, end-users are liable to bear operational expenses only. To implement any project under this model, Alpine and its international EPC partner will design, implement and maintain the project whereas end-users will just pay a bill at a fixed rate that is lower than the Rural Electrification Board's rate. 

This rate will be set and will be fixed by signing a power purchase agreement between both parties for 20 years. 

What holds back expansion of rooftop solar power

Infrastructure Development Company Limited, a government-owned non-bank financial institution specialising in financing renewables, said around 5,000 megawatts of electricity can be generated by installing solar panels on the rooftops of readymade garments, textiles and other industries in the country.

However, at present, the country can generate only 77 MWp of electricity from 1,691 both on-grid and off-grid rooftops solar facilities. 

Talking about this limited amount of rooftop solar electricity, Md Tariqul Islam said gas fired-captive power is a major problem in the expansion of on-grid rooftop solar power in industries. 

Industry owners are reluctant to adopt a no-grid rooftop solar project as gas-fired captive power is the cheapest way of electricity production, he said.

"If the government wants to promote renewable energy, it should discourage gas-based captive-power," he added. 

Apart from this, taxation and policy hindrances are significant reasons behind the slow pace in the expansion of rooftop solar. 

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Eyamin Sajid

25 May, 2022, 07:00 pm

Last modified: 25 May, 2022, 07:06 pm

Bangladesh among top 20 prospective solar farm capacity nations

As of now, Bangladesh could develop capacity to generate 554.17MW electricity from solar power and 2.9MW from wind power


Bangladesh is one of the top 20 countries with prospective solar farm capacity, says data published recently by the Global Energy Monitor (GEM).

However, it said the country is nowhere on the list of the current top 20 wind power capacity nations.

GEM, the San Francisco-based fossil fuel and renewable energy projects monitor, launched this new tracker on 24 May, showing country-by-country build-out of utility-scale solar and wind energy projects.

GEM released two new tools for tracking the global transition to renewable energy: a wind power tracker covering wind farm phases of 10 megawatts (MW) or more, and a solar power tracker covering utility-scale solar PV farm phases of 20MW or more, while it is 10MW or more in Arabic-speaking countries.

Combining government, corporate, and other public data, the two trackers provide project-level data to show the speed and extent to which countries are building out wind and solar power.

As per the tracker, Bangladesh has development capacity of around 2,665 prospective solar farms and hardly 355 prospective wind farms. The country has 34 solar farm phase counts with only seven wind farm phase counts.

A solar project phase is generally defined as a group of one or more solar units that are installed under one permit, and one power purchase agreement, and typically come online at the same time.

However, the report did not disclose the prospect of electricity generation capacity from solar and wind energy. 

As of now, Bangladesh could develop capacity to generate 554.17MW electricity from solar power and 2.9MW from wind power, while the country's total power generation capacity is above 22GW – excluding captive power.

The recently released Global Solar Power Tracker catalogues every solar farm phase at these capacity thresholds of any status, including operating, announced, under development, under construction, shelved, cancelled, mothballed, or retired. 

The Global Wind Power Tracker (GWPT) catalogues 13,263 operating utility-scale wind farm phases generating 681.4GW in 144 countries, and additional wind farm phases that would potentially generate 882GW.

Countries with the most operating utility-scale wind projects are China at 261.2GW, the United States at 127.3GW, Germany at 39.6GW, Spain at 26.8GW, and India at 23.7GW.

The Global Solar Power Tracker (GSPT) catalogues 5,190 operating utility-scale solar farm phases generating 289.7GW in 148 countries, and an additional 3,551 prospective projects that would generate 651.6GW. Utility-scale solar projects account for roughly 65% of total global solar capacity with the remaining 35% being residential and commercial installations.

Countries with the most operating utility-scale solar projects are China at 130.3GW, the United States at 43.4GW, India at 29.0GW, Vietnam at 11.3GW, and Mexico at 10.5GW.

"Capturing the full extent of utility solar and wind energy build-out around the world is critical for measuring progress towards the energy transition," said Ingrid Behrsin, project manager for GEM's Global Wind Power Tracker.

"With open-access project-level data like this, we are now in a much stronger position to track how countries are stacking up against their own stated goals in renewables," Ingrid Behrsin added.  

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Bangladesh seeks Swedish support to fight climate challenges

Published:  June 02, 2022 18:32:51 | Updated:  June 02, 2022 18:58:04

Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen, now in Stockholm on a three-day visit, has said that the plights of displaced coastal people due to sea-level rise may turn into a security issue if the current trend continues.

Momen and his Swedish counterpart Ann Linde had a bilateral meeting on Wednesday on the sidelines of the Stockholm+50 international meeting and sought Swedish assistance to enhance Bangladesh’s capacity to adapt to the adverse effects of the climate crisis.

Bangladesh and Sweden have agreed to strengthen and expand cooperation to combat climate change challenges through joint efforts, reports UNB.

He invited Sweden to build partnership with Bangladesh on further cooperation in climate adaptation, renewable energy, innovation, technology transfer and green growth.

The Swedish foreign minister applauded Bangladesh’s leadership role in global climate change discourses, especially as Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) Chair under the leadership of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday.

Momen said they have just passed on the presidency of CVF, an alliance of 55 climate vulnerable nations- to Ghana. “However, we will continue to promote the interests of the vulnerable nations as part of the TROIKA of CVF.”

He also requested Sweden to enhance and diversify its climate cooperation with Bangladesh through GCF, Adaptation Fund (AF), and Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF).

Momen also stressed on the need of additional financing mechanism for loss and damage.

The two ministers underlined the importance of global cooperation for effective implementation of the Paris Agreement and agreed to work together to that end.

While emphasizing on the importance of trade and investment for a strengthened bilateral relation, Momen urged Sweden to further diversify its exports beyond the traditional items and invest in the 100 Economic Zones that the government of Bangladesh has established.

He sought Sweden’s proactive role in both bilateral and multilateral contexts in promoting the safe, dignified and voluntary return of the forcibly displaced Rohingyas to their homes in Myanmar at the earliest.

Stockholm+50 international environmental meeting being held from June 1-3 under the theme “Stockholm+50: a healthy planet for the prosperity of all – our responsibility, our opportunity.”

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Plans for 200 MW of solar in Bangladesh

An initial 30 MW slice of generation capacity, to include agrivoltaics and aquavoltaics, is set to be generating by 2024 according to the Hong Kong-Bangladeshi JV which plans to develop the site.


A Hong Kong-Bangladeshi joint venture is preparing to seek approval for the first, 30 MW slice of a planned 200 MW agrivoltaic and aquavoltaic site in Cox's Bazar.

The PDL-Greene Solar Power Ltd joint venture set up by Hong Kong business Project Development Ltd and Bangladeshi thin-film solar manufacturer Greene Consortium Ltd is preparing to seek approval for 30 MW of solar generation capacity in the county, or upazila, of Teknaf.

“We will soon submit an application to the government seeking permission to set up the power plant,” PDL-Greene Solar MD Sheikh Abu Mahadi told pv magazine.

The cost

The initial project will require a $36.2 million investment and the facility will produce crops and fish, said Mahadi.

The initial development at the site will feature more than 69,000 unbranded bifacial solar modules across 114 acres.

A further 650 acres is available for the planned 170 MW expansion of the solar farm.

“Our funds are 100% secured as our partners have given confirmation,” added Mahadi, who said the developers want the site operational by 2024.

Teknaf is the site of Bangladesh's first utility scale solar site, a 20 MW facility which was switched on in 2018. The area has the highest solar radiance in the country: 1.55 MWh per kilowatt-peak of solar generation capacity per year.

Bangladesh has 788 MW of renewables generation capacity, of which 554.77 MW is solar.

Junior power minister Nasrul Hamid recently said he expects 1.4 GW of new solar capacity to come online by 2025 in Bangladesh.

Green ambition

The nation plans to generate 40% of its electricity from renewables by 2040.

Bangladesh’s first agrivoltaic plant, a 3.77 MW array developed by Solarland China and local company Mostafa Motors, received government approval in December last year.

The developer of that project, Soudia Agro Solar PV Power Plant Ltd, plans to complete the site by October.

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EU to help Bangladesh in attaining renewable energy goals

Says visiting team

 FE REPORT | Published:  June 16, 2022 10:21:40 | Updated:  June 18, 2022 10:07:26

The EU Member States have common interest to support Bangladesh in achieving their national goals and fulfilling international commitments in the field of renewable energy through the Team Europe Initiative.

"The Initiative will allow us to better coordinate and consolidate our engagement in the Green Energy Sector and strengthen our relationship with the Bangladesh government and the private sector," said Johannes Schneider, head of the Development Cooperation, Germany, during a field visit on renewable energy on Tuesday, according to a press statement.

Team Europe Initiative on Green Energy Transition (TEI GET) organised the field visit to three renewable energy projects.

The visit was attended by Germany and the European Union, as TEI GET co-chairs, along with high-level representatives of Denmark, Sweden, AFD, GIZ, KFW and Switzerland.

Md Mostafa Kamal, additional secretary of the Renewable Energy and Power Division under the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources (MoPEMR), and Mr Md Golam Mostofa, additional secretary, Member Admin, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA), also took part in it.

The visit, organised in association with IDCOL, started with a guided tour of the operational rooftop solar with Net Metering system at Snowtex Outerwear Ltd at Dhamrai, Savar, following a discussion meeting with TEI GET, IDCOL, Snowtex Management and government counterparts.

Later, the group visited an IDCOL project, co-financed by KFW, of Solar Irrigation Pumps, and a domestic biogas plant in Dhamrai.

Maurizio Cian, head of cooperation, EU delegation, highlighted the transformational approach of Team Europe, saying: "Team Europe's common values and expertise in renewable energy are key drivers of this initiative."

"Team Europe provides the framework to deliver European support to the government of Bangladesh, with the ambition of a transformational impact in accelerating a green and just energy transition," he added.

Mostafa Kamal, additional secretary of the Renewable Energy and Power Division, said, "Bangladesh is committed to increasing renewable energy contribution in the national power generation mix, to promote appropriate, efficient and environment-friendly technology for the development of renewable energy."

"We are looking forward to implementing our strategies in collaboration with Team Europe," he added.

TEI GET, launched in Dhaka in June 2021, aims at supporting Bangladesh to build a power system that leads to maximum coverage of the country's energy demand through renewable energy while reducing GHG emission, energy consumption and demand through energy efficiency.

TEI GET, co-chaired by Germany and the EU, includes EU Member States Denmark, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and like-minded countries like Norway and Switzerland.

[email protected]


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Eyamin Sajid

21 June, 2022, 11:40 am

Last modified: 21 June, 2022, 02:40 pm

Summit plans 50MW floating solar plant on Barapukuria submerged lands


Summit Corporation Limited, one of the largest business conglomerates in the country, is planning to build a 40MW-50MW floating solar plant on the lands of the Barapukuria Coal Mine Company Limited, now underwater.

In an expression of interest sent to the Power Division, Petrobangla, and Barapukuria Coal Mine Company, on 26 May, Summit proposed four models for implementing the project – through a joint venture with Barapukuria Coal Mine, under a land lease agreement, as a lead member with revenue sharing of the project, or any other arrangement suggested by the power, energy and mineral resources ministry.

It also offered to deliver the project in Dinajpur, around 350km northwest of Dhaka, in the shortest possible time, using the world's most efficient technologies.


Engineer Md Kamruzzaman Khan, managing director at BCMCL, told The Business Standard that, alongside Summit's proposal, they also received four more proposals from Chinese firms.

"These all are very initial proposals and we are interested in taking up a project in the lakes. However, the Energy Division and Power Development Board will decide on the right model or structure of the project," he added.

Sources at BCMCL said there are around 300 acres of land at the Barapukuria that have turned into a big lake after coal extraction in the underground method of mining.

For the last few years, the submerged lands have remained as wetlands which used to be cultivated before being acquired by BCMCL for mining. 

Sustainable and Renewable Development Authority (Sreda), a state-owned agency responsible for promoting renewable energy, in cooperation with the Asian Development Bank, conducted a feasibility study last year to determine scope for a floating solar plant on the submerged lands.

The study found that a 50MW floating solar is feasible there, said Sreda officials.

Before submitting their proposal to the ministry, Summit Corporation Limited on its own initiative also visited the submerged BCMCL lands in order to see and understand the site conditions.

Based on the available data, the leading private power generation and energy logistics company proposed implementing the project, either as a lead member, or in participation with the Barapukuria Coal Mine Company. 

In the proposal, highlighting its financial strength, Summit said it maintains a AAA credit rating and has total equity of $800 million and debt financing of over $1.4 billion.

At present, Summit owns and operates a floating storage and regasification unit (FSRU) terminal capable of degasifying 500mmcfd and storing 138,000 cubic metres of LNG at Maheshkhali.

The conglomerate also has a 125,000 ton oil storage terminal and a fleet of 30 vessels for furnace oil logistics.

The company alone has a total power generation capacity of 1,941MW, while the combined production capacity of all private producers is 11,108MW.

As of now, Bangladesh has a capacity to generate 788MW of renewable energy, while the country's total power generation capacity is above 22GW (excluding captive power). 

Of total renewable capacity, solar energy accounts for 554.17MW, while a single hydro facility is in second position with 230MW of generation capacity.


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টিবিএস রিপোর্ট

09 August, 2022, 12:15 pm

Last modified: 09 August, 2022, 12:26 pm

প্যাসিফিক জিন্সের কারখানায় চালু হলো ৩.৫ মেগাওয়াটের সোলার পাওয়ার প্লান্ট 

এই প্ল্যান্ট থেকে প্রতিদিন যে পরিমাণ বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন হবে তা কারখানার মোট বিদ্যুৎ চাহিদার ১০ শতাংশ; এর মাধ্যমে প্রতি মাসে প্রায় ১০ লাখ টাকার বিদ্যুৎ সাশ্রয় হবে।



ছবি-মোহাম্মদ মিনহাজ উদ্দিন/টিবিএস

চট্টগ্রাম ইপিজেডে দৈনিক ৩.৫ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন সক্ষমতার সোলার পাওয়ার প্লান্ট চালু করেছে প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপ। সোমবার (৮ আগস্ট) বিকেলে আনুষ্ঠানিকভাবে এই সোলার প্লান্টের উদ্বোধন করেন বাংলাদেশ রপ্তানি প্রক্রিয়াকরণ অঞ্চল কর্তৃপক্ষের (বেপজা) নির্বাহী চেয়ারম্যান মেজর জেনারেল আবুল কালাম মোহাম্মদ জিয়াউর রহমান। 

প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপের 'গ্রিন এনার্জি ইনিশিয়েটিভের' অংশ হিসেবে ইউনিভার্সাল জিন্স লিমিটেড কারখানায় নির্মিত এই সোলার প্লান্টে বিনিয়োগের পরিমাণ ৫ লাখ ইউএস ডলার। ৪৯ হাজার ৯৪ স্কয়ার ফিট আয়তনের সোলার প্লান্টে ওয়াকওয়ে রয়েছে ১২ হাজার ৪৫০ স্কয়ার ফিট। এই প্লান্টটি বছরে ৭০০ টন কার্বন ডাই অক্সাইড নির্গমন হ্রাস করবে।


উদ্বোধনী অনুষ্ঠানে প্যাসিফিক জিন্স কর্তৃপক্ষ জানায়, এই প্ল্যান্ট থেকে প্রতিদিন সাড়ে ৩.৫ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন হবে যা কারখানার মোট বিদ্যুৎ চাহিদার ১০ শতাংশ। পাওয়ার প্লান্টটির বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদনের মাধ্যমে প্রতি মাসে প্রায় ১০ লাখ টাকার বিদ্যুৎ সাশ্রয় হবে। 

প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপ পর্যায়ক্রমে তাদের ১০টি প্রতিষ্ঠানে রুফটপ সোলার পাওয়ার প্লান্ট স্থাপন করবে। এর মধ্যে গত ১ এপ্রিল ইউনিভার্সাল জিন্স লিমিটেডে সোলার পাওয়ার প্ল্যান্ট চালু  হয়। যেটি ৮ আগস্ট আনুষ্ঠানিকভাবে উদ্বোধন করা হয়। এই বিদ্যুৎ প্ল্যান্ট থেকে এই পর্যন্ত ১৮৫ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন হয়েছে।

এছাড়া আগামী সেপ্টেম্বরে প্যাসিফিক জিন্স লিমিটেড কারখানায় সোলার পাওয়ার প্ল্যান্ট চালু হতে যাচ্ছে। ৮০ হাজার স্কয়ার ফিট আয়তন জুড়ে স্থাপন করা এই প্লান্টে দৈনিক ৫.৫ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন হবে। সেটি ওই কারখানার ১৫ শতাংশ বিদ্যুৎ চাহিদা পূরণ করবে।

প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপ পর্যায়ক্রমে ২০২৩ সালে জিন্স ২০০০ লিমিটেড এবং এনএইচটি ফ্যাশনস লিমিটেডে, ২০২৪ সালে প্যাসিফিক নিটেক্স লিমিটেড এবং প্যাসিফিক ওয়ার্কওয়্যারস লিমিটেডে আর ২০২৫ সালে প্যাসিফিক ক্যাসুয়ালস লিমিটেড (ইউনিট ১, ২), পাসিফিক এটায়ার্স লিমিটেড, প্যাসিফিক জিন্স লিমিটেড (ইউনিট ২) এবং ইউনিভার্সাল জিন্স লিমিটেডে (ইউনিট ৪) সোলার পাওয়ার প্ল্যান্ট স্থাপনের পরিকল্পনা করেছে।

১০টি কারখানায় ৪ লাখ ৪১ হাজার ৬৫০ স্কয়ার ফুট জায়গাজুড়ে সোলার পাওয়ার প্ল্যান্ট চালু হলে ৩২.৭০ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন হবে, যা প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপের মোট বিদ্যুৎ চাহিদার ২০ শতাংশ পূরণ করতে সক্ষম হবে। বছরে কার্বন ডাই অক্সাইড নির্গমন হ্রাস করবে ৬ হাজার ৪৫৮ মেট্রিক টন।


উদ্বোধনী অনুষ্ঠানে বেপজার নির্বাহী চেয়ারম্যান মেজর জেনারেল আবুল কালাম মোহাম্মদ জিয়াউর রহমান বলেন, 'বেপজা অর্থনৈতিক অঞ্চল এবং ইপিজেডের কারখানাগুলোতে ৫ থেকে ১০ শতাংশ সোলার প্লান্ট চালুর বিষয়টিকে প্রাধান্য দিচ্ছে। প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপ সোলার প্লান্টের মাধ্যমে তাদের মোট বিদ্যুৎ চাহিদার ২০ ভাগ পূরণ করতে যে উদ্যোগ নিয়েছে তা অত্যন্ত ইতিবাচক। অন্যান্য বিনিয়োগকারীদের আহবান জানাবো যাতে তাদের কারখানায় এই ধরনের প্লান্ট চালু করে।'

পাওয়ার প্ল্যান্ট উদ্বোধনী অনুষ্ঠানে অন্যান্যদের মধ্যে উপস্থিত ছিলেন চট্টগ্রাম ইপিজেডের নির্বাহী পরিচালক মশিউদ্দিন বিন মেজবাহ, প্যাসিফিক জিন্স গ্রুপের ব্যবস্থাপনা পরিচালক সৈয়দ মোহাম্মদ তানভির প্রমুখ।  

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Honourable State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources, Nasrul Hamid has mentioned that, 40% of electricitywill come from clean sources by . The strategy was adopted in the country's Power System Master Plan (PSMP), he said while speaking on “Green Transition”.



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Land shortage slows growth of solar power in Bangladesh

Published:  August 24, 2022 19:48:24 | Updated:  August 25, 2022 08:32:53

Topu Roy's family did not have electricity until around 2005 when his parents set up a solar power system at their home in Dinajpur, in northern Bangladesh, to run lights and fans.

In the past two decades, some 6 million solar home systems have been installed across the country, bringing electricity to remote off-grid communities.

"It is a remarkable success story," said Shahriar Ahmed Chowdhury, director of the Centre for Energy Research at Bangladesh's United International University.

For the fast-developing South Asian nation, solar power has brought benefits to citizens while creating jobs. But the sector's growth has been constrained by bottlenecks such as a lack of land on which large-scale plants are built, reports Thomson Reuters Foundation.

Grid power finally reached Roy's village in 2020 under a government programme to electrify the whole country by 2021, enabling residents to use a range of electric appliances for the first time.

"But with the recent power crisis in Bangladesh, we are back to square one, resorting to the solar home system as grid power is mostly off," said the 25-year-old student.

Millions of Bangladeshis are doing the same to cope with severe outages, caused by a recent power crisis amid extreme heat and high fuel prices, with rural areas bearing the brunt.

Bakirul Islam, 21, a student from Mymensingh, north of Dhaka, said he is now getting only two to three hours of grid power per day and is also relying on a solar home system.

Hikes in fuel prices globally have destabilised energy policy in Bangladesh, which imports about a quarter of its natural gas supply, sparking calls for a more diversified energy mix including a greater focus on renewables, especially solar.

The country has little more than 900 megawatts (MW) of renewables capacity, out of total power capacity of 25,700 MW, falling far short of a target to achieve 10% of generation from clean energy sources by 2020.

Last year the power ministry announced a more ambitious goal to source 40% of the nation's electricity from renewables by 2041, with solar viewed as having the highest potential.


Solar energy development has lagged partly because it was expensive a decade ago, at more than $0.16 per kilowatt-hour, said Ijaz Hossain, a professor at the Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET).

But the price has since plunged, making solar cheaper than using imported fuels like coal, heavy fuel oil or diesel, said Chowdhury of the Centre for Energy Research.

The recent rise in fossil fuel prices means industry can now save a lot of money by adopting solar power, said Ziaur Rahman Khan, another BUET professor.

With rooftop solar, 1 kilowatt hour of electricity costs about 4 taka ($0.04) for a commercial or industrial user, compared with 8-11 taka per unit for grid power, said Md. Rashedul Alam, assistant director at the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority, a Bangladesh government agency.

Estimates of Bangladesh's solar energy potential support a larger-scale push into power from the sun, experts say.

A National Solar Energy Roadmap, drafted in 2020 with the United Nations Development Programme, calculated that 6,000 MW could be generated from solar by 2041 in a business-as-usual scenario - and with aggressive policies, as much as 30,000 MW.

The report offers key policy pointers, such as the "very real opportunities" of rooftop solar installations, said Farseem Mannan Mohammedy, director of BUET's Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development.

Recent solar power expansion has focused on both rooftop solar photovoltaic systems and large-scale ground-based plants.

Rooftop solar is appealing as it does not require land acquisitions, said Munawar Moin, group director at Rahimafrooz Ltd, a pioneering solar-panel manufacturer in Bangladesh.

An earlier study estimated that 5,000 MW could be generated from solar plants on industrial rooftops.

Chowdhury noted there are now more than 30 large-scale rooftop solar PV plants, mostly mounted on factories.

Besides garment and textile manufacturing, other sectors like steel and electronics are also venturing into rooftop solar.

Rooftop solar PV plants are a great source of job creation, said Mohammedy, noting that Bangladesh has the fifth highest number of jobs in solar PV, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

According to a 2020 IRENA report, there were 137,000 jobs in Bangladesh's solar sector, mostly concentrated in solar home systems including 10,000 jobs in solar-module assembly.

But obtaining finance to expand the business has been a key challenge, experts said, with bank officials often lacking the knowledge needed to assess solar projects.

To create manufacturing jobs in the supply chain, the government should set quotas so that a certain share of solar panels must be procured locally, added Moin.


Nestled between the scenic Brahmaputra River and farm fields in Mymensingh district, stands a 50-MW solar park set up by HDFC Sinpower Limited, a joint venture between Bangladeshi, Malaysian and Singaporean investors.

The plant, which has supplied power to the grid since last November, is one of eight large-scale solar plants operating in Bangladesh, which have combined capacity of about 230 MW.

Ibrahim Johny, 25, who works as a security guard at the Mymensingh solar park was unemployed before getting this job, he told the Thomson Reuters Foundation at the entrance.

Plant manager Ahsanul Muznebin said 42 local people are employed there as module cleaners, while another 14 work as security guards and 12 as operation and maintenance engineers.

But setting up a new solar park is difficult because Bangladesh has little available land, said BUET professor Khan.

A national land use policy from 2001 prohibits conversion of fertile agricultural land for other purposes.

Mymensingh solar park manager Muznebin told the Thomson Reuters Foundation it took almost two years to acquire the 174 acres needed for the plant, as farmland could not be used.

Chowdhury, who authored the draft solar roadmap, said sufficient land could be found for solar parks by reclaiming barren riverside areas and estuaries, while farmland could also be used for both agriculture and power generation.

He urged the government to take responsibility for organising land for large-scale solar parks and developing transmission infrastructure for solar power hubs.

It should also ease the stringent qualification criteria and approval process for ground-mounted solar farms, he added.

Alam, of the sustainable energy authority, said plummeting investment costs gave solar a bright future in Bangladesh and the government would support its development, including by setting a new target in a revised renewable energy policy due in 2023.

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Bangladesh entering the gigawatt club

Very few solar plants across the world produce more than 1,000MW from a single unit


Special Correspondent

August 25, 2022 9:00 PM

For the first time since the country introduced solar systems in 1996, Bangladesh has received several proposals from foreign and local private firms willing to set up 1,000MW solar power plants – thanks to the government’s timely steps to shift to clean energy in phases.

According to several highly-placed officials asking not to be named, the government received at least three such proposals seeking unsolicited bids to implement the projects, each of which may need an investment of over Tk15,000 crore or over $1.5 billion and vast land.

The proposed locations are Zajira in Shariatpur, Saral of Banshkhali in Chittagong and Swarna Dwip (formerly Jahazzair Char) in Noakhali.

There are very few solar plants across the world producing more than 1,000MW from a single unit – with China, India and the UAE leading the race, and are working to expand the capacity to 5,000-10,000MW in the next few years.

On the other hand, Bangladesh gets around 230MW of electricity from eight grid-tied solar plants.

Shariatpur district on the southern side of the Padma Bridge does not have any power plants. On the other hand, Swarna Dwip island still has vast land suitable for installing solar panels. 

Banshkhali will see its first mega power plant, two coal-fired units each with a capacity of 660MW, go into operation this year. If approved, the 1,000MW solar plant will be set up at Saral Union of the upazila.

Bangladesh Army’s 33rd Infantry Division has been in charge of the 370sq-km island since 2013 and has been implementing different development projects alongside setting up a base for exercises. 

In February this year, the US-based Pacific Energy Group, LLC (Pacific Energy), through its subsidiary Eleris Energy Limited, Hong Kong, signed a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) with the Bangladesh Army Welfare Trust, on building the plant. 

Of the 11 other proposals currently being reviewed by the government, Sreemangal in Moulvibazar has been proposed for a 300MW plant, Mongla in Bagerhat for 200MW, and Gaibandha and Thakurgaon for two 200MW plants.

The other plants have an estimated capacity of 10-70MW, several senior officials concerned told Dhaka Tribune.

Bright future

The contribution of solar energy to the national grid is negligible – around 1% of total daily generation of around 12,000-14,000MW. In FY2017-22, generation by solar plants increased marginally – from 38MW in 2020 to 230MW in 2022.

In the last couple of years, many local and foreign investors have expressed interest in setting up large-scale solar plants. During this time, eight solar parks have been established and these are now adding around 230MW to the national grid every day.

The government has already cancelled at least 10 coal-power projects of more than 8,000MW capacity to meet the country’s climate change commitments.

Bangladesh now produces over 890MW from renewable sources – a meagre 2.9MW from wind energy, 230MW from the country’s lone hydropower plant at Kaptai in Rangamati and the rest from solar parks. 

The country’s largest grid-tied solar power plant, producing around 100MW of electricity in Mongla of Bagerhat, came into operation in December last year.

The 3.28MW plant at Sarishabari in Jamalpur is the country’s first grid-tied solar power facility that came into commercial operation in 2017.

The other key players operating solar parks are the consortiums of HETAT-DITROLIC and IFDC Solar (50MW in Mymensingh), Spectra Engineers Limited and Shunfeng Investment Limited (35MW in Manikganj); Joules Power Limited (20MW in Cox’s Bazar), and Parasol Energy Ltd (8MW in Panchagarh).

Since 1996, the number of Solar Home Systems (SHS) units has now reached a whopping 6,037,601-mark. Meanwhile, the off-grid generation of electricity from SHS, irrigation and rooftop units, street lights and solar-powered telecom BTS amounts to 351MW, according to the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda).

There are some 2,592 solar irrigation units producing 48.14MW; some 296,861 street lights with a capacity of 17.07MW; 115 rooftop units (except for net metering) of 14.20MW and 1,933 solar-powered telecom BTS generating 8.06MW.

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নারায়ণগঞ্জে হচ্ছে ৬ মেগাওয়াট সক্ষমতার বর্জ্যভিত্তিক বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র

নিজস্ব প্রতিবেদক

সেপ্টেম্বর ০১, ২০২২


বর্জ্য থেকে বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন করতে নারায়ণগঞ্জে স্থাপিত হচ্ছে ছয় মেগাওয়াট ক্ষমতাসম্পন্ন বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র। নারায়ণগঞ্জ সিটি করপোরেশনের আওতাধীন ৯ নম্বর ওয়ার্ডের জালকুড়ি এলাকায় এই কেন্দ্র স্থাপন করা হবে।

এ বিষয়ে আজ বৃহস্পতিবার রাজধানীর সোনারগাঁও হোটেলে কনসোর্টিয়াম অব ইউডি এনভায়রনমেন্টাল ইকুইপমেন্ট টেকনোলজি কোম্পানি লিমিটেড নামে চীনের একটি কোম্পানির সঙ্গে চুক্তি করেছে বাংলাদেশ বিদ্যুৎ উন্নয়ন বোর্ড (পিডিবি)।

চুক্তি সই অনুষ্ঠানে প্রধান অতিথি হিসেবে উপস্থিত ছিলেন স্থানীয় সরকারমন্ত্রী মো. তাজুল ইসলাম, বিশেষ অতিথি বিদ্যুৎ-জ্বালানি ও খনিজসম্পদ প্রতিমন্ত্রী নসরুল হামিদ, নারায়ণগঞ্জ সিটি করপোরেশনের মেয়র ডা. সেলিনা হায়াৎ আইভী, নারায়ণগঞ্জ-৪ আসনের সংসদ একেএম শামীম ওসমান এবং চীনের রাষ্ট্রদূত এইচইলি জিমিং, স্থানীয় সরকার মন্ত্রণালয়ের সচিব মো. মেজবাহ উদ্দিন চৌধুরী এবং বিদ্যুৎ বিভাগের সচিব মো. হাবিবুর রহমান।

স্থানীয় সরকারমন্ত্রী মো. তাজুল ইসলাম বলেন, বাংলাদেশ সরকার পরিবেশ ভারসাম্য রক্ষায় যেসব প্রকল্প গ্রহণ করতে চলেছে নারায়ণগঞ্জের প্রকল্পটি তার একটি। এর আদলে সারা দেশের পৌরসভা ও গ্রামে এই কাজ করা হবে। এরমধ্যে ২০ থেকে ৩০টি জায়গা আমরা চিহ্নিত করেছি।

বিদ্যুৎ প্রতিমন্ত্রী নসরুল হামিদ বলেন, এই কেন্দ্র থেকে যে বিদ্যুৎ কেনা হবে, তার দাম হবে প্রতি ইউনিট প্রায় ২০ টাকা। অথচ আমরা এটি বিক্রি করবো ৫ থেকে ৬ টাকায়। এই ঘাটতির সংস্থান করবে বিদ্যুৎ বিভাগ। এর মূল কারণ হচ্ছে— প্রধানমন্ত্রী চেয়েছেন দেশের সব বর্জ্য ব্যবস্থাপনার একটি নির্দিষ্ট কাজ হোক। উনার এই আগ্রহের কারণে আজকের এই প্রকল্প। তিনি বলেন, নারায়ণগঞ্জ এই প্রকল্পের পর পরিবেশবান্ধব ও মডেল শহরে পরিণত হবে।

স্বাগত বক্তব্যে পিডিবির চেয়ারম্যান মাহবুবুর রহমান বলেন, এই কেন্দ্রটি স্থাপন হলে নারায়ণগঞ্জের বর্জ্য ব্যবস্থাপনা অনেক ভালো অবস্থানে আসবে। এই কেন্দ্র থেকে নো-পেমেন্ট নো-ইলেকট্রিসিটি অনুযায়ী বিদ্যুৎ নেয়া হবে। এখান থেকে প্রতি ইউনিট বিদ্যুৎ ২০ দশমিক ৯১ সেন্টে কিনবে পিডিবি৷ এই চুক্তি সইয়ের পর ৪৫৫ দিনের মধ্যে প্রকল্পটি বাস্তবায়ন করা হবে। আমি আশা করছি, নির্দিষ্ট সময়ে এই কাজ শেষ হবে।

কনসোর্টিয়াম অব ইউডি এনভায়রনমেন্টাল ইকুইপমেন্ট টেকনোলজি কোম্পানির সিইও জো টিং জি বলেন, বেল্ট ইন ইনিশিয়েটিভ এর আওতায় বিশ্বের বহু দেশ ক্লিন এনার্জি নিয়ে কাজ করছে। এই প্রকল্পের আওতায় আজ নারায়ণগঞ্জে বর্জ্য বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র স্থাপন করা হচ্ছে। আমরা আশা করছি, চীনের এই কাজের আওতায় সারা বিশ্বের সবুজ প্রকল্পের অংশ হয়ে উঠবে নারায়ণগঞ্জ।

মেয়র ডা. সেলিনা হায়াৎ আইভী বলেন, দীর্ঘ ১১ বছরের অপেক্ষার পর আমরা আজ এই কেন্দ্র পেতে যাচ্ছি। এজন্য আমরা ২৩ একর জায়গা অধিগ্রহণ করেছি। নারায়ণগঞ্জ থেকে ৫০০ টন ময়লা সংগ্রহ করা হবে এই কেন্দ্রের জন্য। আমরা যদি ময়লা দিতে না পারি, সেক্ষেত্রে ১০০ টাকা করে জরিমানা দিতে হবে। আর ওরা নিতে না পারলে ৫০০ টাকা উল্টো আমাদের দিতে হবে।

তিনি বলেন, এই কেন্দ্র স্থাপনের পর নারায়ণগঞ্জে আর ময়লা থাকবে না। পাশাপাশি শীতলক্ষ্যা নদীর উন্নয়নে আমরা কাজ করতে চাই।

অনুষ্ঠানে বলা হয়, প্রাথমিকভাবে প্রকল্পের মোট ব্যয় ধরা হয় ১৯১১৮.২৫ লাখ টাকা। পরে প্রকল্পের ব্যয় সংশোধিত হয়ে ৩৪৫৯১.৩১ লাখ টাকা ধরা হয়েছে। যা ২০১৮ সালের ৭ নভেম্বর একনেক সভায় অনুমোদিত হয়।

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Contract on Sunday to set up 55MW wind power plant at Mongla

Published:  September 03, 2022 16:53:54

A Chinese-Bangladeshi consortium will sign an agreement on Sunday with Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) to set up a 55MW wind power plant on build-own-operate basis at Mongla in Bagerhat.

As per the proposed deal, state-owned BPDB will purchase electricity from the independent power producer (IPP) plant over the period of 20 years, reports UNB.

Earlier, in December 2020, Cabinet Committee on Government Purchase approved the proposal of a Chinese-Bangladeshi consortium to set up the power plant on build-own-operate basis.

As per the proposal of the Consortium of Envision Energy, (Jiangsu) Co. Ltd., China, SQ Trading and Engineering, Bangladesh and Envision Renewable Energy Limited, Hong Kong will develop the plant under a new special project vehicle (SPV) company Mongla Green Power Ltd.

The project cost is expected to be around $96.597 million.

State-owned BPDB will purchase electricity from the plant at a tariff of 13.20 cents, equivalent to Tk 13 per kilowatt hour (each unit).

According to BPDB officials, the government will pay a total of more than Tk 20.35 billion for the entire contract period against its purchase of electricity from the maiden private wind power project.

The Chinese-Bangladeshi consortium was the lone bidder to participate in the tender process invited for the project, said a BPDB official.

According to the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda), only three small wind energy plants, having a total capacity of 2.9MW, have been installed by the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) so far against its target of setting up wind power projects having total capacity of 1152MW by 2020.

Earlier, BPDB signed a contract in March, 2015 to award a 60MW wind power project to US-DK Green Energy (BD), a joint venture between Taylor Engineering Group of USA, ph-consulting group of Denmark and Multiplex Green Energy of Bangladesh, to set up the plant at Kurushkul, southeast of Moheshkhali River in Cox's Bazar.

But the sponsor failed to implement the project in the last five years.

The Mongla 55MW wind power project is one of the three similar projects undertaken by the BPDB in recent years. The other two projects were planned for Chandpur and Inani beach in Cox's Bazar.

But its move failed to attract participation of wide-range bidders.

"Only a single bidder - Chinese firm Envision Energy - participated in the tender process for two locations and finally emerged qualified for only one location, Mongla. Again, the government re-tendered for the remaining two locations - Inani beach and Chandpur, ''said a BPDB official.

The bid submission timeline was extended to December 31, said Md Zahir Ahmed, a senior official of the Bangladesh Power Development Board, which floated the tender. Earlier BPDB invited bids for a 100MW offshore wind power project but could not find takers.

Officials at Sreda and BPDB said a number of studies were conducted in collaboration with international donor agencies to assess the wind energy potentials across the country.

The latest one was conducted by National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), with financial support of the US Agency for International Development (USAID), which identified nine locations, having wind energy potentials across the country.

The locations, having average wind speed between 5-6 metre per second at a height of over 60-80 metre, are Lalpur of Natore in Rajshahi, Chandpur, Sitakundu and Parkay Beach in Chittagong, Gouripur in Mymensingh, Madhupur Tea Estate in Habigonj, Dacop in Khulna near Mongla port, Inani Beach in Cox's Bazar and Badarganj in Rangpur.

The NREL, in its report submitted to the Power Division, also mentioned that the country has a potential of 30,000MW of wind energy as there are 20,000 square kilometres of areas where wind speed is 5.75-7.75 metre per second.

Experts in the renewable energy industry blamed the implementing agency's failure to present location-specific data and information on wind energy in a credible way before potential investors.

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04 September, 2022, 09:50 pm

Last modified: 04 September, 2022, 10:03 pm

Focus more on generating electricity renewable sources: Nasrul Hamid



File Photo: State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid

State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has urged officials to pay more attention to generate electricity from renewable sources.

"You have to work with broader mindset to generate more electricity from the renewable sources," he said, while virtually addressing a contract signing ceremony at Bidyut Bhaban on Sunday for setting up a 55MW wind power plant in Mongla.

He said the wind project is the part of the government's target to generate 10% of electricity from renewable energy by 2030 and 40% by 2040.

A Chinese-Bangladeshi consortium signed the deal with Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) to set up the plant on a build-own-operate basis at Mongla in Bagerhat.

The Consortium of Envision Energy, (Jiangsu) Co Ltd, China, SQ Trading and Engineering, Bangladesh and Envision Renewable Energy Ltd, Hong Kong will develop the plant under a new special project vehicle (SPV) company Mongla Green Power Ltd.

The project cost is expected to be around $96.597m.

At Sunday's function, BPDB director Golam Rabbani and Mongla Green Energy's managing director Xu Wentao signed the contract on behalf of their respective sides.

As per the deal, the state-owned BPDB will purchase electricity from the plant at a levelised tariff of 13.20 Cents, equivalent to Tk13 per kilowatt hour (each unit).

The BPDB will purchase electricity from the independent power producer (IPP) plant over a period of 20 years spending a total of more than Tk2,000 crore.

This has been the second deal for wind power for which the BPDB signed contract with the private sector sponsor.

Earlier, the BPDB signed the first deal with US-DK Green Energy (BD), a private firm, for setting up a 60MW wind power plant at Cox's Bazar.

Nasrul Hamid inaugurated the ground breaking of the Cox's Bazar plant in March this year.

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‘Rooftop solar panels can produce 4,000MW electricity in Bangladesh’

Idcol CEO says

Star Business Report

Thu Sep 8, 2022 08:40 PM Last update on: Thu Sep 8, 2022 08:47 PM


Bangladesh has the potential to generating over 4,000 megawatts of electricity from rooftop solar panels, said Alamgir Morshed, executive director and CEO of Infrastructure Development Company Limited (Idcol).

The Idcol has set a target to finance 300 MW of power through rooftop solar projects by 2025, he added.

He spoke at a workshop on installation of rooftop industrial solar system at M Anis Ud Dowla Conference Hall at Police Plaza Concord in Dhaka on Wednesday.

Rooftop solar panels can produce power at cost lower than the grid tariff, experts said at the event.

Thus, financing such projects makes financial sense apart from achieving the country's target of renewable energy-based power generation, they said.

The government has expressed its vision to generate 4,200 megawatts (MW) of electricity from renewable energy sources by 2030.

Md Habibur Rahman, secretary to power division, and Sharifa Khan, secretary to the Economic Relations Division, also spoke.

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Reyad Hossain

09 September, 2022, 11:10 pm

Last modified: 09 September, 2022, 11:14 pm

Industries invest big time in solar to combat energy crunch


Amid a power supply crunch triggered by severe energy shortages and a fear that power tariff may go further up in coming days, industries in Bangladesh are increasingly turning to solar plants to meet a part of their electricity needs.

Some entrepreneurs are also installing sophisticated energy-efficient equipment to reduce power consumption. They are trying to cope with the situation by installing boilers that work even at low gas pressure.

Entrepreneurs have told The Business Standard that they do not see a long-term solution to the energy and power crisis.

Electricity bills will keep increasing steadily, coming close to the cost of self-managed power generation, they mentioned, adding that global buyers of Bangladeshi apparels are also asking Bangladeshi suppliers for a long-term plan on green energy as there is a pressure on them to reduce the use of electricity generated using fossil fuels such as gas and coal in the production process in the supply chain.

On the other hand, reliance on diesel has increased for the time being to tackle the current crisis, which is driving up the cost of production.

Factories in some areas of the country including Narayanganj, a hub of knit fabric production, are forced to run diesel generators due to severe gas shortages. Although they have to pay the gas bill, they are forced to spend crores of taka every month for using diesel also.

This is the backdrop against which some industries are switching to solar plants opting to generate part of their electricity needs, entrepreneurs told TBS.

Rising Group, one of the largest garment and textile mills in the country, has recently installed rooftop solar power plants on its two factories in Manikganj and Gazipur with an investment of $2 million. The plant in Manikganj has a capacity to produce 3MW electricity while that in Gazipur has a daily production capacity of 1MW.

Mahmud Hasan Khan Babu, managing director of Rising Group, said, "We think the crisis of gas-based electricity will remain in the long run. Fuel prices are also uncertain. From the experience of the past few years, we may assume that power tariffs will continue to rise."

So, the Riging Group factories are trying to meet some of their electricity needs through solar panels as what Mahmud said "part of long-term preparations".

"This is also a part of the Sustainable Green Energy Initiative," he added.

The group's two solar plants having a lifespan of 25 years will produce 5,282MW of electricity annually, he told TBS, adding this will reduce carbon dioxide (CO²) emissions by 63,751 tonnes and save an estimated 4,71,759 barrels of crude oil.

Rising Group has also taken up a new initiative to expand its existing solar power generation capacity by installing a 3.6MW plant in its factory in Manikganj, which will reduce CO² emissions by around 55,000 tonnes and save over 4 lakh barrels of crude oil in its lifetime.

At least four industry owners have told TBS that they have plans to install solar plants as part of long-term preparations to tackle possible future energy crises.

Zaber & Zubair Fabrics Ltd, a sister concern of Noman Group, one of the top textile manufacturers in Bangladesh, already has a 400KW solar plant. A new solar plant with 1MW capacity is under construction. Many other companies of Noman Group are following suit.

Fakir Fashions Ltd of Narayanganj has started the installation of a 2MW solar plant.

Gazipur-based Mosharaf Composite Textile Mills Limited is checking the feasibility of installing a solar plant, its Managing Director Md Mosharaf Hossain told TBS.

Some entrepreneurs in the knitwear sector also are said to be treading this path.

On the other hand, some industries are trying to deal with the current situation by installing new machinery that is more energy efficient, consumes less electricity or can keep the factory running even with low gas pressure.

Nonetheless, renewable energy sources, even more so solar power, still accounts for less than 1% of the total electricity generation in the country.

Alamgir Morshed, executive director and CEO of Infrastructure Development Company Limited (Idcol), recently said in a discussion that the country has the potential to generate more than 4,000MW of electricity with rooftop solar plants.

Industrialists, however, have said renewables may be of some benefit to factories that require relatively less gas or electricity, but they cannot substitute gas.

Use of energy-efficient machines on rise

Fazlee Shamim Ehsan, managing director of Fatullah Fashion Ltd, told TBS that the permissible gas pressure in his factory is 10 pounds per square inch (psi), but it often drops below 2 psi.

The factory has four boilers. Recently, they have replaced one of the boilers and the new one can operate at 2 psi pressure.

Ehsan said he is going to replace the remaining three old boilers as well.

Other factory owners are also trying to change their machineries in this way, he added.

Little Star Spinning Mills Limited in Savar also has replaced some of its old machinery with new ones, resulting in a reduction in power consumption by 18-20%.

Md Khorshed Alam, chairman of the company, told TBS that since they have achieved success by setting up new technology machinery on an experimental basis, they are now mulling installation of such equipment on a larger scale.

Challenges are there

Entrepreneurs have, however, told TBS that there are some challenges in installing solar plants on their own initiatives or using new technology and machinery to reduce power consumption.

A hefty amount of initial investment is required for the installation of a solar plant and the maintenance cost is high as well, which is difficult for many entrepreneurs to afford. Again, this requires a lot of open space, which is not possible for all factories.

Moreover, the amount of electricity obtained from such plants is not much because they depend only on sunlight.

Apart from this, while the cost per unit of gas-based power generation is Tk5-6, the production cost of one unit of solar power is around Tk9, industry insiders said.

On the other hand, it is not an easy solution for everyone in the current situation, because it takes at least six months to complete a solar plant project.

Increased diesel use raises cost burden

The government's rationing of gas and electricity as part of austerity measures has led to a reduced supply of these utilities in the industrial areas of the country. Amid frequent power outages and reduced gas pressure, the cost of using diesel as an alternative system for power generation has increased for entrepreneurs.

Industrialists said currently there is a severe shortage of gas in Narayanganj. Besides, some areas of Savar, Gazipur, and Manikganj are also experiencing reduced gas supply.

Fazlul Hoque, managing director of Plummy Fashions Limited, a Narayanganj-based knit garment factory, told TBS, the company is having to bear an additional expenditure of Tk25-30 lakh on diesel every month.

The additional cost of Fatullah Dyeing is about Tk2.25 crore per month.

Other factory owners also have reported a similar rise in expenses for the same reason.

A knitwear factory owner told TBS that the additional expenditure on diesel alone is raising the production cost of a T-shirt by $0.4.

If this continues for long, factories will face financial losses, making it difficult for them to repay bank loans, he feared.

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Sajjadur Rahman

04 September, 2023, 11:05 pm

Last modified: 05 September, 2023, 01:29 pm

A green shift: Why industries are loving rooftop solar solution

Local and foreign firms have been discussing investments in renewable energy, especially in solar power



Despite the significant increase in national grid capacity – which now exceeds 25,000MW, far surpassing the demand of approximately 15,000MW – industries are increasingly finding alternative energy sources like solar power more attractive. 

The Business Standard has talked with at least a dozen major companies who say they have already moved to solar power for meeting partial energy needs or are exploring different investment models for getting on board.

Rooftop solar power, in particular, is becoming popular due to its reliability and cost-effectiveness, industry insiders said. Also, industries are showing a growing interest in rooftop solar power because of the convenient access to financing.

Also, the adoption of this relatively new solar power harnessing method got a boost with the rising power cost and the ability to sell excess generated power to the national grid.

Major industries are onboard

Meghna Group of Industries has embarked on a groundbreaking rooftop solar power project, investing approximately Tk100 crore for a total capacity of 23MW at its Meghna Ghat industrial zone. The conglomerate is financing the project internally, and Omera Solar is scheduled to commence its execution next week.

Bitopi Group's Tarasima Apparels, situated in Manikganj and recognised as a top green factory, is in the process of installing 3.57MW of solar power on the factory's rooftop. Fakir Fashions, which initially installed around 1.5MW of solar power on its rooftop in 2020, has initiated the installation of another 1.68MW this year. Both these companies are adopting the capital-lease financing model.

Viyellatex Group, one of the largest garment exporters in the country, also has decided to install solar on the rooftops at its all factories and they will begin the work next month. Pacific Jeans Group, a major denim manufacturer and exporter, currently meeting 12%-15% of its total electricity demand from rooftop solar, has decided to extend its solar installations to cover all of its units due to the compelling financial advantages. Giant Group, another garment exporter, is also negotiating with developers to install solar power on their factories' rooftops.

Different financing models

Solar power solution providers and developers cover all associated expenses, including materials, installation, and ongoing maintenance. Users simply pay a tariff comparable to their national grid bills, making the transition to solar power an appealing and hassle-free choice for businesses. This option is commonly referred to as the OpEx model.

Another model available for solar power adoption is the CapEx model, where users bear all the costs upfront and are not obligated to pay monthly tariff bills. Industries with surplus cash prefer this model.

The third option is capital lease financing, wherein a developer company lends money to users, which is repaid with interest over a span of five years, without the need for monthly bill payments.

These three business groups are exploring both CapEx, OpEx, and capital-lease financing models to install solar power, officials of the companies said.

City Group, one of the largest conglomerates in the country, also is negotiating with Idcol to install solar power in its economic zone as it is already using this green power in its tea gardens.

These are just a few industries among hundreds that are rushing to install solar power on the rooftops of their factories.

"We are getting more queries from factories for rooftop solar power now than any time before. We've already installed 66MW rooftop solar power and another 50MW are in the process," said Masudur Rahim, CEO of Omera Solar, a concern of diversified East Coast Group.

He said most industries want the OpEx model, but it is risky for the developers as an industry may default and become bankrupt. In this model, users agree with the developers to pay a monthly tariff, which is 15% less than the off-peak grid tariff, for 20 years. "In the OpEx model, we've to be sure about getting the loans back," said Rahim.

Based on the current demand, Omera alone set a target to set up 200MW of rooftop solar systems by 2025. State-owned Idcol, the largest financier for green energy plants, has so far installed 51MW of solar systems on the rooftops in different industries and it has already bagged orders for setting up another 100MW.

Idcol is confident that it will be able to install 300MW rooftop solar systems by 2025.

Why did this become so attractive?

The surging demand for rooftop solar power can be attributed to several factors, with two prominent ones being the introduction of the net energy metering scheme in 2018 and multiple electricity price hikes in 2022 and the current year. Specifically, in January 2023 alone, the electricity price experienced two increases, reaching nearly Tk8 per kilowatt-hour.

Challenges also emerged for businesses as a result of the Russia-Ukraine war disrupting the global supply chain and leading to a sharp rise in commodity prices on the international markets.

Consequently, the government found it necessary to revise fuel oil and gas prices in order to face losses and reduce the subsidy burden. Nevertheless, industries continued to grapple with intermittent power supply issues, compelling them to seek alternative sources such as solar energy.

Masudur Rahim of Omera said demand for rooftop solar power from industries has been rising because of the net metering system and price hike.

Under the net metering scheme, an electricity consumer will be able to export the additional electricity generated from the solar system installed in his premises after self-consumption to the distribution grid network. Currently, 1,941 rooftop solar users, mostly industries, are included in this net metering system, according to the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda).

In addition to frequent price hikes, uninterrupted supply has also significantly raised production costs, prompting many businesses to explore alternative energy sources.

"We have observed that the return on investment from rooftop solar systems takes only 5-6 years," said Syed M Tanvir, managing director of Pacific Jeans.

Paban Chowdhury, adviser to the City Group, said they are installing solar power because of the unpredictability of prices for the grid power. Interrupted supply and high cost for diesel-powered electricity have prompted the City Group to explore solar power, he said.

Solar saves a lot

Golam Baki Masud, general secretary of Solar Module Manufacturers Association of Bangladesh, said rooftop solar power can save users 30%-40% compared to the tariffs they pay for grid electricity.

Masud, who also serves as the managing director of Greenfinity Energy, said, "We have recently assisted three small industries in Chattogram with the installation of rooftop solar power systems on their factories. Despite their modest size, these factories are achieving substantial monthly savings, ranging from Tk3-4 lakh, through the utilisation of solar energy."

He said the potential of rooftop solar power in the country is enormous. "If industries agree, we can help them generate at least 5,000MW of solar power in the next five years," he noted.

Local and foreign investors interested 

Local and foreign firms have been discussing investments in renewable energy, especially in solar power.

Last week, a joint venture of Saudi-based ACWA Power Company and three local firms including the Power Development Board, agreed to set up a 300MW solar power plant in Rampal upazila of Bagerhat, the largest in the country. The plant required an investment of $430 million, equivalent to over Tk4,700 crore.

Also, several foreign companies in partnership with local firms have shown interest in a tender floated by the Bangladesh Jute Mills Corporation (BJMC) to lease rooftop spaces of the factories and warehouses at its 13 jute mills to install solar power systems.

Recently, Teesta Solar Ltd, a venture of Beximco Group, has opened production of its plant, having a capacity of 200MW, largest in the country. Energon Renewables Ltd, another firm, has set up a solar plant with a capacity of 134MW.

How electricity is generated in Bangladesh

Bangladesh's current power sector heavily depends on imported primary fuel sources. Over 50% of the nation's electricity is produced using a combination of domestic natural gas and imported liquefied natural gas (LNG).

As per data from the Power Development Board, coal contributes to approximately 17% of the total power generation, while heavy fuel oil (HFO) accounts for nearly 26%. Imported power sources contribute around 4.66%, whereas solar energy represents a modest 459MW, constituting only 1.84% of the overall installed capacity.

Challenges also emerged for businesses as a result of the Russia-Ukraine war disrupting the global supply chain and leading to a sharp rise in commodity prices on the international markets.

Consequently, the government found it necessary to revise fuel oil and gas prices in order to face losses and reduce the subsidy burden. Nevertheless, industries continued to grapple with intermittent power supply issues, compelling them to seek alternative sources such as solar energy.

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Abul Kashem

30 August, 2023, 12:05 am

Last modified: 30 August, 2023, 01:54 pm

Saudi firm to partner in Bangladesh’s largest solar plant

The Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) will provide the land adjacent to the Rampal coal-fired power plant for the solar plant that will generate 300MW of electricity, sources said.


A joint venture led by Saudi-based ACWA Power Company is setting up Bangladesh's largest solar power plant in Rampal upazila of Bagerhat with an investment of $430 million.


The Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) will provide the land adjacent to the Rampal coal-fired power plant for the solar plant that will generate 300MW of electricity, sources said.

Two private sector companies in Bangladesh – Comfit Composite Knit Ltd and Viyellatex Spinning Ltd – will also invest in the plant, which will run on the build-own-operate method.

ACWA Power, the world's largest private-sector power company, will hold a 51% share in the power plant.

Sources in the finance ministry have indicated that the tariff proposal for the establishment of this power plant might be approved during today's (30 August) meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Government Procurement. Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal is expected to chair the meeting.

ABM Ziaul Haque, chief engineer (Private Generation) at BPDB, acknowledged to have received such a proposal recently.

"Now it is being examined by the BPDB chairman's wing," he told The Business Standard.

Power Division officials have stated that the BPDB has the land for the potential establishment of an additional coal-based power plant adjacent to the Rampal coal-based power plant. The 300MW solar power plant needs 900 acres of area and will be constructed on that plot of land.

Largest solar plant in Bangladesh

Kawsar Ali, chief operating officer at Comfit Composite Knit Ltd, said, "It will be the largest solar power plant in Bangladesh. We are investing in this plant in partnership with the BPDB and ACWA Power Company."

He said Comfit Composite Knit's textile factories are green and platinum-certified.

"We have already invested in the gas and furnace oil-based Shahjibazar Power Plant and Midland Power Plant, which together generate 350MW. The company is also increasing its investment in renewable energy," he told TBS.

According to officials, Saudi Arabia's ACWA Power is the world's largest electricity company and currently generates about 56,000MW of electricity.

ACWA Power signed a memorandum of understanding with the BPDB in November last year to establish a 1,000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh.

Also, the Saudi company wants to invest $2.5 billion in Bangladesh to build a gas-run plant capable of generating 3,600MW electricity. It signed a MoU with the BPDB for the development of a natural gas/R-LNG-based combined cycle power plant on 17 October 2019.

Officials at Comfit Composite Knit Ltd and Viyellatex Spinning Ltd said that ACWA Power will be the lead partner and investor in the 300MW solar power plant in Rampal.

The officials, however, declined to give any information about the ownership shares of the BPDB and two domestic private companies.

Will take 2.5 years to implement

According to an official involved with the process, it will take about two and a half years from now to implement the project and go into production. After the completion of the first phase of the power plant, there are plans to set up another 400MW solar power plant in the second phase at the same location.

To prevent the negative effects of climate change, the government has announced that it will not build new coal-based power plants. Recently, the government has given importance to renewable energy and solar power in the context of an increase in the price of energy in the international market.

Last month, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina inaugurated the 200MW Teesta Solar Plant, which is the largest solar power plant in Bangladesh so far.

Beximco Power Limited, an associate company of Beximco Group, has built this plant in Sundarganj Upazila of Gaibandha.

Besides, a solar park has been built on 350 acres of land in Rampal by Energy Renewables, an associate company of Orion Group. From this park, 134.3 MW of peak (solar energy measuring unit) electricity is being supplied to the national grid.

Govt targets 10% power from solar

The government is chasing a target of 10% electricity generation from renewable sources, including solar, hydro, and wind, by 2025.

According to the Bangladesh Power Development Board, the country currently has 2% of its electricity generation capacity from renewable sources. Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs, requires at least 12% of electricity from these sources.

According to data from the BPDB, the production cost per unit of electricity in the country's diesel-powered plants is Tk22.

The cost of generating electricity from LNG is Tk10 per unit; from local coal in Barapukuria, it is Tk4 per unit; from imported coal, it is Tk6 per unit; and from furnace oil, it is Tk12 per unit. However, these sources of electricity are not environmentally friendly.

The production cost per unit of solar power in Bangladesh is Tk8-10. The cost at the country's only hydropower plant in Kaptai ranges from Tk0.30 to Tk1, depending on the season

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Abul Kashem

19 September, 2023, 10:50 pm

Last modified: 19 September, 2023, 10:58 pm

Japanese firm building 200MW solar plant at Barapukuria

The floating unit will be installed in two reservoirs covering 109 and 95 acres, while the ground-mounted unit will be installed on 448.17 acres of land.

  • The sponsoring company has proposed a tariff of $0.12 – equivalent to Tk13.14 – per kilowatt-hour generated at the ground-mounted unit
  • For the floating unit, the proposed tariff is $0.16 – equivalent to Tk17.52 – per kilowatt-hour. 
  • The government will purchase electricity from the plant at these rates for a period of 20 years.
  • The Power Development Board has agreed to purchase power from this plant as per the proposed rates.
  • The Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement is expected to approve the proposed tariffs today.
  • Japanese firm building 200MW solar plant at Barapukuria

A consortium of Japanese Sumitomo Corporation and Parker Bangladesh is setting up a 200MW solar power plant – composed of a 50MW floating and a 150MW ground-mounted units – in the Barapukuria coal mine area in the north-western Dinajpur district.

The floating unit will be installed in two reservoirs covering 109 and 95 acres, while the ground-mounted unit will be installed on 448.17 acres of land.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has already approved the plant, according to officials at the Power Division.

Sumitomo Corporation is also constructing a Japanese economic zone in Narayanganj. In addition, it has invested in the Matarbari coal-based power plant, phase 1.

The sponsoring company has proposed a tariff of $0.12 – equivalent to Tk13.14 – per kilowatt-hour (kWh) generated at the ground-mounted unit, according to a summary sent by the Power Division to the Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement.

In the case of the floating unit, the proposed tariff is $0.16 (equivalent to Tk17.52). The government will purchase electricity from the plant at these rates for a period of 20 years.

The proposed tariff rates are higher than those for the country's largest solar power plant, which was approved by the cabinet committee last month.

According to a Power Division official, the technical committee has stated that the proposed tariffs are reasonable, taking into account the commercial, technical and financial aspects of the plant. The Board of Directors of the Power Development Board has also agreed to purchase power from this plant as per the proposed rates.

The proposed tariffs have been included in the agenda of the Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement, which will be presided over by Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal on Wednesday, for their approval.

Due to the negative effects of climate change and environmental pollution, the government has shifted its focus away from coal-based plants and placed greater emphasis on renewables, particularly solar energy.

Last month, the Cabinet Committee on Public Procurement approved the tariff proposal for the country's largest 300MW solar power plant at Rampal in Bagerhat.

The Power Division will purchase electricity from the plant at a rate of Tk11.067 (equivalent to ¢10.20) per kilowatt-hour and will be required to pay power bills totalling Tk10,762 crore over a period of 20 years.

Aqua Power Company of Saudi Arabia and two private sector companies from Bangladesh, Comfit Composite Knit Ltd and Viyellatex Spinning Ltd, will invest $430 million in this plant.

In addition, the premier inaugurated the 200MW Teesta Solar Plant in August, which is Bangladesh's largest solar power plant to date. Beximco Power Limited has built this plant in Gaibandha.

In the summary prepared for the Barapukuria solar power plant, the Power Division stated that the sponsor company will be responsible for completing the project, which includes arranging land resources, constructing transmission lines, and building sub-stations, all at its own expense and under its own management.

Mohammad Jahangir Alam, deputy managing director (Project Planning and Monitoring) of Barapukuria Coal Mining Company Limited (BCMCL), told The Business Standard, "The Bangladesh Power Development Board has leased the land from us to set up this power plant, and they are handling the remaining aspects of the project."

Power Division officials said the sponsor company has also agreed to establish approximately 2.5km of a 132KV double-circuit overhead or underground line from the project area to the grid substation for electricity evacuation at its own cost.

The government is chasing a target of 10% electricity generation from renewable sources, including solar, hydro, and wind, by 2025.

According to the Bangladesh Power Development Board, the country currently generates 2% of its electricity generation capacity from renewable sources. Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, or SDGs, requires at least 12% of electricity from these sources.

According to data from the BPDB, the production cost per unit of electricity in the country's diesel-powered plants is Tk22.

The cost of generating electricity from LNG is Tk10 per unit; from local coal in Barapukuria, it is Tk4 per unit; from imported coal, it is Tk6 per unit; and from furnace oil, it is Tk12 per unit. However, these sources of electricity are not environmentally friendly. The production cost per unit of solar power in Bangladesh is Tk8-10.

Rezaul Hasanat, chairman and CEO of Viyellatex Group, a vital participant among the quartet of investors driving the 300MW solar power in Rampal, explained the rationale behind the relatively elevated costs of solar power units in Bangladesh.

Hasanat attributed this disparity to a quartet of critical factors: substantial expenses incurred in land leasing and development; reduced solar intensity in comparison to sun-drenched regions like the Middle East; heightened costs of borrowing at 10.10% within Bangladesh versus lower rates in various other nations; and a tax regime that only partially exempts solar power investments, a divergence from the comprehensive tax exemptions extended in many countries.

Elaborating, Hasanat said, "Our project's lifecycle is burdened by land acquisition and development expenses, which account for nearly 30% of the total cost. Moreover, the intensity of sunlight we receive is approximately 40% lower compared to the Middle East."

He said borrowing expenses in Bangladesh are significantly higher at 10.10% compared to numerous other countries. At the same time, while Bangladesh provides limited tax relief for solar power ventures, this stands in contrast to the complete tax exemptions prevalent in various global counterparts.

"In light of these multifaceted factors, the aggregate impact results in a tariff surcharge of 75% to 80%," he added.

If these influencing factors align with those of other nations, the current cost of ¢10.20 per unit could easily plummet to ¢2.50, said the chairman of Viyellatex Group, which is one of the country's foremost garment exporters

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টিবিএস রিপোর্ট

05 November, 2023, 01:45 pm

Last modified: 05 November, 2023, 01:55 pm

দেশের প্রথম অফশোর বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্প বাস্তবায়নের অনুমোদন দিল সরকার 

কার্যক্রম চালু হলে, ৫০০ মেগাওয়াট সক্ষমতার এই অফশোর বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পটি অনশোর সাবস্টেশনের মাধ্যমে জাতীয় গ্রিডে বিদ্যুৎ সরবরাহ করবে, যা পরবর্তীতে সরাসরি দেশের বাসা-বাড়ি ও ব্যবসা প্রতিষ্ঠানের প্রয়োজন মেটাতে সক্ষম হবে।


ডেনমার্কের ১.৩ বিলিয়ন মার্কিন ডলার সমমূল্যের সবুজ বিনিয়োগ (গ্রিন ইনভেস্টমেন্ট) প্রস্তাব– বাংলাদেশের প্রথম ৫০০ মেগাওয়াট ক্ষমতাসম্পন্ন (ইউটিলিটি স্কেলের) বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পের সম্ভাব্যতা যাচাইয়ের অনুমোদন দিয়েছে সরকার।

একইসঙ্গে, এর প্রথম ধাপের উন্নয়নে প্রস্তাবিত এলাকা আগামী তিন বছরের জন্য অনুমোদন দেওয়া হয়েছে। আজ রোববার (৫ নভেম্বর) প্রকাশিত এক প্রেস বিজ্ঞপ্তিতে এ তথ্য জানানো হয়।

এর আগে, চলতি বছরের জুলাইয়ে ডেনমার্কের কোপেহেগেন ইনফ্রাস্টাকচার পার্টনারস (সিআইপি) ও কোপেনহেগেন অফশোর পার্টনারস (সিওপি) বাংলাদেশের সামিট গ্রুপ সহযোগে এই বিনিয়োগ (এফডিআই) প্রস্তাবনাটি দাখিল করে।

প্রস্তাবিত প্রকল্পটি কক্সবাজার জেলায় সমুদ্রতীর দূরবর্তী স্থানে (অফশোর) স্থাপিত হবে। 

কার্যক্রম চালু হলে, ৫০০ মেগাওয়াট সক্ষমতার এই অফশোর বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পটি অনশোর সাবস্টেশনের মাধ্যমে জাতীয় গ্রিডে বিদ্যুৎ সরবরাহ করবে, যা পরবর্তীতে সরাসরি দেশের বাসা-বাড়ি ও ব্যবসা প্রতিষ্ঠানের প্রয়োজন মেটাতে সক্ষম হবে।

অফশোর বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পটি বাংলাদেশের উপকূলবর্তী সম্পদ ও 'সুনীল অর্থনীতির' সর্বোৎকৃষ্ট ব্যবহারের জন্য একটি অনন্য সুযোগ।

ইনস্টিটিউট ফর এনার্জি ইকোনোমিকস অ্যান্ড ফাইনান্সিয়াল অ্যানালাইসিসের (আইইইএফএ) গবেষণালব্ধ অনুমান বলছে, দেশের এই সবুজ রূপান্তরের জন্য বার্ষিক ১.৭ বিলিয়ন মার্কিন ডলার প্রয়োজন। সামিট, সিআইপি ও সিওপি'র শত কোটি ডলারের প্রকল্প প্রস্তাবটি বাংলাদেশের অভ্যন্তরীণ ও বৈদেশিক বিনিয়োগ খাতে নতুন অধ্যায়ের সূচনা করবে; একইসঙ্গে এটি জলবায়ু সমৃদ্ধিশীল ভবিষ্যতের ক্ষেত্রেও টেকসই ভূমিকা রাখবে। 

প্রেস বিজ্ঞপ্তিতে আরও বলা হয়েছে, প্রকল্পটি বাস্তবায়িত হলে এটিই হবে বাংলাদেশে, এমনকি সম্ভবত দক্ষিণ এশিয়াতেও প্রথম অফশোর উইন্ড এনার্জি প্রকল্প; যা প্রযুক্তি সক্ষমতা তৈরির মাধ্যমে দেশে নতুন শিল্পখাতের উন্মোচন করবে।

প্রাথমিক নিরীক্ষা অনুযায়ী, প্রকল্পটির নির্মাণকাজের জন্য প্রত্যক্ষ ও পরোক্ষভাবে হাজারো মানুষের চাকরির সুযোগ সৃষ্টি হবে। এছাড়া, প্রকল্পটির প্রথম ৩০ বছরের পরিচালনাকালে উচ্চতর দক্ষ পদেও কর্মসংস্থানের সুযোগ তৈরি হবে।

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জোবায়ের চৌধুরী

24 December, 2023, 02:05 pm

Last modified: 24 December, 2023, 02:34 pm

২ মাসের মধ্যে কক্সবাজারে দেশের প্রথম বাণিজ্যিক বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পের কাজ শেষ হবে



বায়ু থেকে শক্তি: দৈনিক জাতীয় গ্রিডে ২০ মেগাওয়াট সরবরাহ করছে দেশের একমাত্র বায়ু বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র

কক্সবাজারে দেশের প্রথম বাণিজ্যিক বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পের কাজ প্রায় শেষের দিকে। আগামী দুই মাসের মধ্যে ৬০ মেগাওয়াট সক্ষমতার বায়ুবিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্রটি পুরোদমে উৎপাদনে যাবে বলে আশা করা হচ্ছে। 

সরকারি প্রকল্পটির কাজ চলতি বছরের ডিসেম্বরের মধ্যে শেষ হওয়ার কথা থাকলেও কেন্দ্রটি পূর্ণ মাত্রায় উৎপাদনে যেতে কিছুটা বাড়তি সময় লাগতে পারে বলে জানিয়েছেন কর্মকর্তারা। 

বিদ্যুৎ বিভাগের যুগ্ম সচিব (নবায়নযোগ্য জ্বালানি) নিরোদ চন্দ্র মন্ডল দ্য বিজনেস স্ট্যান্ডার্ডকে বলেন, বাংলাদেশের প্রথম বাণিজ্যিক বায়ুবিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র নির্মাণ প্রকল্পটি প্রায় শেষের পথে।

গত বছরের ৩১ মার্চ ১১৬.৫১ মিলিয়ন ডলারের ব্যয়ের এ প্রকল্পের কাজ শুরু হয়। এই প্রকল্পের নেতৃত্বে রয়েছে বেসরকারি প্রতিষ্ঠান ইউএস-ডিকে গ্রিন এনার্জি বিডি লিমিটেড, আর্থিক সহায়তা দিচ্ছে চীনা কোম্পানি এসপিআইসি উইলিং পাওয়ার কর্পোরেশন।

সমুদ্র উপকূলের কাছে কক্সবাজারে অবস্থিত বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পটি চলতি বছরের ২৬ মে জাতীয় গ্রিডে পরীক্ষামূলকভাবে ৩০ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ সরবরাহ শুরু করে। 

কাজ শেষ হওয়ার পর প্রকল্পের তত্ত্বাবধানকারী সংস্থাটি ১৯ বছরের ব্যবস্থাপনা চুক্তির অধীনে সরকারের কাছে বিদ্যুৎ বিক্রি করবে।

কক্সবাজার উপকূলরেখা বরাবর অবস্থিত খুরুশকুল, পিএম খালী, চৌফলদন্ডী ও পোকখালী ইউনিয়নের মতো বেশ কিছু জায়গায় ২২টি টারবাইন স্থাপনের কাজ চলছে। প্রতিটি টারবাইনের সক্ষমতা ৩ মেগাওয়াট। 

প্রকল্প ব্যবস্থাপক প্রকৌশলী মুকিত আলম খান টিবিএসকে জানান, প্রকল্পের কাজ ৮৫ শতাংশ সম্পন্ন হয়েছে। ১০টি টারবাইন ইতিমধ্যে ৩০ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন করছে, আর পাঁচটি টারবাইন চালু হওয়ার অপেক্ষায় রয়েছে, আরও সাতটি টারবাইন স্থাপনের পর্যায়ে রয়েছে।

পুরোদমে চালু হওয়ার পর বায়ুবিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্রটি বছরে প্রায় ১৪৫ মিলিয়ন কিলোওয়াট পরিচ্ছন্ন বিদ্যুৎ উৎপাদন করবে। আর কয়লা খরচ ৪৪ হাজার ৬০০ টন, কার্বন-ডাই-অক্সাইড নিঃসরণ ১ লাখ ৯ হাজার ২০০ টন কমাবে। 

এছাড়া কেন্দ্রটি ১ লাখ পরিবারের বিদ্যুতের চাহিদা মেটাবে বলে আশা করা হচ্ছে।

বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্রটি নির্মাণের সময় ১ হাজার ৫০০-র বেশি কর্মসংস্থান তৈরি হয়েছে। 

কক্সবাজারের বাইরে সিরাজগঞ্জ, বাগেরহাট ও চুয়াডাঙ্গা জেলায় ১০২ মেগাওয়াট সক্ষমতার আরও কয়েকটি বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্পের কাজ চলছে। চাঁদপুর সদরে ৫০ মেগাওয়াট বায়ুবিদ্যুৎ প্রকল্প এবং ফেনীর সোনাগাজীতে ৩০ মেগাওয়াট বিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্রের পরিকল্পনাও পাইপলাইনে রয়েছে।

২০২২ সালের সেপ্টেম্বরে বাংলাদেশ বিদ্যুৎ উন্নয়ন বোর্ড (বিপিডিবি) বাগেরহাটের মোংলায় একটি ৫৫ মেগাওয়াটের বায়ুবিদ্যুৎকেন্দ্র নির্মাণের জন্য মোংলা গ্রিন পাওয়ার লিমিটেডের সঙ্গে চুক্তি স্বাক্ষর করে।

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Joynal Abedin Shishir

21 March, 2024, 12:25 pm

Last modified: 21 March, 2024, 06:09 pm

Blue hydrogen worse than fossil fuels: Study

Bangladesh mulls taking an ambitious plan to install more than 22,000 megawatts of hydrogen-based electricity by 2050


The government's plan to install more than 22,000 megawatts of hydrogen-based electricity by 2050 appears to go against climate goals, as new research finds blue hydrogen worse than traditional fossil fuels in terms of harmful emissions.

The Integrated Energy and Power Master Plan (IEPMP-2023), supported by the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan, proposes to install 137,800MW by 2050 in Bangladesh, of which 22,048MW would be from hydrogen-based electricity.

There are three types of hydrogen – grey, blue, and green. Grey hydrogen is produced using fossil fuels such as natural gas and coal. Green is produced through renewable energy sources such as wind and solar, which don't release greenhouse gases when generating electricity.

Blue hydrogen, often hailed as a climate-friendly option, is produced from fossil fuels with partial carbon capture and storage. However, research findings suggest that blue hydrogen may be worse for the environment than traditional fossil fuels.

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The IEPMP-2023 target has not specified whether power will be generated by using green or blue hydrogen. However, experts fear that a major part of this hydrogen will be blue because it is more cost-effective compared to green hydrogen.

In blue hydrogen production, methane gas will be broken down into gas, and the emitted carbon dioxide will be separated from the atmosphere through carbon capture and storage technology. It is claimed that the environment can be kept in good condition. However, new research from EDF suggests otherwise.

Green hydrogen, on the other hand, uses renewable electricity to break down water (H₂O) to produce hydrogen, according to researchers. It will require investment in technology, but the raw material is readily available.

In contrast, blue hydrogen will depend on local or imported gas for its production.

Whether blue hydrogen or green, it will require new technologies. These technologies may need to be imported from Japan or other countries. Japan, in particular, has numerous blue hydrogen power plants. Importing these technologies will incur significant costs.

After all of these investments, if the environment does not benefit as expected, then ultimately, blue hydrogen could become a burden for Bangladesh in every aspect, including the economy, experts warn.

The study published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) last month says that the climate impacts of blue hydrogen could be up to 50% worse than traditional fossil fuels.

US-based non-profit environmental advocacy organisation EDF's research was published last 21 February.

The EDF study exposes its shortcomings, revealing that high levels of hydrogen and methane emissions along its supply chain can worsen near-term warming by up to 50% compared to fossil fuels.

Proponents of blue hydrogen production and use are using carbon capture and storage technology as their shield, the study said. It is said that up to 98% of carbon dioxide can be prevented from entering the atmosphere through this technology. However, such technology has not been brought to the market so far, which can prevent the release of carbon dioxide at this rate on a regular basis.

Instead of this 98%, if the carbon capture and storage technology is slightly less, such as 60%, that can trap carbon dioxide; it is claimed that the environmental benefits due to blue hydrogen may be 15–50% less in the short term and 20-60% less in the long term.

Tianyi Sun, lead author of the EDF report, said, "It's important to get the emissions accounting right, both to accurately assess the climate impacts of hydrogen systems and to identify opportunities to reduce them."

"When we consider all climate warming emissions and their impacts over the near and long term, our analysis shows that hydrogen deployment can have far greater impacts than expected," she added.

Governments around the world are currently in the midst of deciding how to define "clean" hydrogen, with experts arguing the only clean form of hydrogen is green hydrogen made from renewables.

A global ISO methodology to calculate hydrogen emissions, announced at COP28 in December, drew concern over its risk of under-reporting blue hydrogen emissions.

However, concerns have been raised by a number of local and international experts regarding the inclusion of blue hydrogen in this plan.

M Zakir Hossain Khan, a climate and renewable energy finance expert, told The Business Standard, "Shifting focus towards these unproven sources, prioritising clean energy over proven renewable energy like blue hydrogen energy, will create an unprecedented burden for Bangladesh in terms of safety, security, affordability, access to resources, and energy scarcity."

"The government should avoid the blue hydrogen energy plan. Green hydrogen can be an ideal solution that offers a truly zero-emission alternative," he emphasised.

Hasan Mehedi, member secretary of the Bangladesh Working Group on External Debt, told TBS, "Hydrogen technology is known as a false solution for emission reduction because the technology is not proven enough. Even developed countries like the US, Canada, and the UK rejected the proposal of adopting it from Japan during the G7 Summit last year."

"Considering the cost of production, a developing country like Bangladesh should not accept such unproven technology," he added.

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Jobaer Chowdhury

18 March, 2024, 09:40 am

Last modified: 18 March, 2024, 04:28 pm

Country's first commercial wind power plant starts production



Bangladesh has achieved a new milestone in its renewable energy ambition, with the country's first commercial wind power plant going into full production this month.

The wind power plant in Cox's Bazar, boasting a capacity of 60 megawatts, started full-scale operation on 8 March and has been running smoothly ever since, according to Nirod Chandra Mondal, joint secretary (renewable energy) at the Power Division.

"The electricity generated by the new power plant is being directly supplied to the national grid. Experiments were conducted to ensure a smooth connection before the commercial launch," he told The Business Standard.

Nirod also said the installation of 20 out of 22 turbines of the plant has already been completed and the remaining work is expected to be completed this month.

"The construction of the wind power plant project has been completed, and it is now in commercial production. The capacity test was held on 7 March, and 60MW of electricity is connected to the national grid," Project Director Engineer Mukit Alam Khan, also a representative of the Chinese company implementing the project, told The Business Standard.

He also said they have an agreement with the government to supply 60 megawatts (MW) of electricity from the power plant.

"Currently, 20 turbines, each with a capacity of 3 MW, are operational, providing a total of 60 MW of electricity. The installation of the remaining two turbines is underway." he said.

When asked about the difference between day and night, he said the performance is slightly better at night than during the day.

The firm overseeing the project has an 18-year contract with the government over the sale of electricity.

Initiated in March 2022 with a total cost of $116.51 million, the project has been spearheaded by US-DK Green Energy BD Ltd, a private entity, with financial backing from the Chinese company SPIC Wuling Power Corporation.

Situated near the seacoast, the project reached a trial milestone on 26 May last year, injecting 30MW of electricity into the national grid. 

The plant, a large-scale centralised wind power plant, facilitated the South Asian country's energy transition and green development. Bangladesh joined the global wind power club with the inauguration of its Cox's Bazar wind power project.

Upon its full operation, the project will provide Bangladesh with about 145 million kWh of clean electricity per year, reduce coal consumption by 44,600 tons and carbon dioxide emissions by 109,200 tons, as well as meet the electricity demand of 100,000 households, according to project officials.

Yin Bobo, director of Cox's Bazar Wind Power Plant, told the Chinese news outlet Xinhua that the project has customised the "China Plan" for Bangladesh, devising site-specific solutions for the coastal areas characterised by frequent tropical cyclone disasters, poor alluvial plain geological foundations, and low average wind speed.

Notably, the initiative has created over 1,500 jobs during construction, with ongoing training for the eight operations and maintenance staff. Additionally, 25 officials are deployed to operate the plant.

Yin emphasised that Wuling Power Corporation will continue to focus on the development of green energy and assist Bangladesh in its low-carbon energy transformation, aiming to realise the dream of "Golden Bangladesh" at an early date.

Besides its immediate impact on electricity generation, the wind power project in Cox's Bazar marks a significant stride in Bangladesh's commitment to environmental sustainability. The project is poised to mitigate the effects of climate change, enhance air quality, and reduce the nation's reliance on fossil fuels.

Wind energy in Bangladesh

This isn't the country's first wind power project. The Bangladesh Power Development Board constructed a 0.9MW wind-based power plant near the dam along the River Muhuri in Feni in 2005. 

Three years later, a 1MW wind power plant was set up in Kutubdia, Cox's Bazar. Both plants are now out of operation due to a lack of supervision and interest from the board.

Rush for generating 10% from renewables by 2025 

Currently, three more wind projects with a cumulative power generation capacity of 102MW are underway in Sirajganj, Bagerhat, and Chuadanga. Besides, contractor selection for a 50MW wind power project in Chandpur and a 30MW plant in Feni is in the pipeline.

In September 2022, the Bangladesh Power Development Board signed a contract with Mongla Green Power Limited to build a 55MW wind power plant in Mongla, Bagerhat.

Denmark's significant $1.3 billion investment in Bangladesh's 500MW offshore wind project has received government approval, signalling a major step towards sustainable energy.

The government is moving for the new plants given its determination to achieve its target of generating 10% of electricity from renewables, including solar, hydropower, and wind, by 2025.

Currently, the country has the capacity to generate 2% of its electricity from renewable sources, according to the Bangladesh Power Development Board. At least 12% of electricity is needed from renewable sources to attain the Sustainable Development Goals or SDGs.

Earlier, the government had set targets of producing at least 5% of the total electricity from renewable sources by 2015 and 10% by 2020, but none of them could be achieved yet, according to the Ministry of Power, Energy, and Mineral Resources.

"Bangladesh can generate 20,000MW of green electricity within 2041 by expanding solar power generation facilities," says the "National Solar Energy Roadmap 2021-41" prepared by the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority.

Even solar power capacity can be taken to 30,000MW with proper utilisation of riverside and abandoned lands, it is estimated.

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