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Merkel visits Delhi metro station, fitted with Germany-funded solar panel

twitter-logo PTI        Last Updated: November 2, 2019  | 21:31 IST

(Eds: With additional inputs) New Delhi, Nov 2 (PTI) German Chancellor Anjela Merkel visited on Saturday the Dwarka Sector 21 metro station, which has DMRC's first rooftop solar power plant financed by KfW, a state-owned development bank of her country. Merkel visited the terrace of the metro station where she was briefed by officials of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) about the solar project. The Frankfurt-based bank has also offered soft loans for other projects in India, including the Clean Ganga Mission. The visit to the metro station was the last leg of Merkel's trip to India, who arrived here on Thursday night. DMRC said the 500-KW plant has been operational since 2014 and has generated nearly 3.3 million units since its commissioning. In October 2012, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between DMRC with GIZ (Gesellschaftfür Internationale Zusammenarbeit) – a German government organisation working in the field of sustainable development -- to develop a feasible business model using solar photovoltaic technology for electricity generation and demonstration. GIZ had surveyed DMRC premises and prepared reports for three sample sites (Yamuna Bank Depot for Inclined Roof, Yamuna Bank metro station for Curved Roof, and Dwarka Sector 21 metro station for Flat Roof). Successful implementation of this pilot project of 500 kWp capacity with the support of Solar Energy Corporation of India paved the way for many more rooftop solar installations and till date 32.4 MW of rooftop solar capacity has been commissioned on DMRC premises in Delhi and NCR, the corporation said. This rooftop capacity of 32.4 MWp is spread over 14 metro train depots, 61 metro stations and three residential complexes of the DMRC. The installed capacity of 32.4 MW will cut down CO2 emissions by nearly 34,000 tonnes per year and this solar project is registered under Clean Development Mechanism with UNFCCC and will earn carbon credits for DMRC, it said. “Keeping in view the alarming pollution level in the city, visit of German Chancellor to the solar plant installed on a public transport network, puts the spot light back on the need of using clean energy and to identify steps to cut down emissions,” the DMRC said in a statement. During the visit, Merkel was accompanied by Julia Klockner, Minister for Food. The chancellor spent nearly 30 minutes at the station and also interacted with an e-auto driver. Rajkumar, the driver of the e-auto, said the German chancellor asked him about the vehicle and his work during their three-minute conversation. A former supervisor at a garments company, Rajkumar, who identifies himself by first name, said he was happy to have interacted with Merkel. The e-auto is being rented by a private company to auto drivers and Rajkumar pays Rs 400 daily as its plying charges. "I am so elated that I could shake hand and talk to her," he said about his interaction with Merkel. PTI PR SOM SMN SMN

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