Mumbai's colleges are adopting various means for energy conservation

Even as University Grants Commission has begun energy audits of colleges, institutions in Mumbai are already taking different initiatives toward energy conservation. Several city colleges have changed the way electricity is being used, activities such as installation of solar panels and student awareness have begun.

In the current era, it has become very important to ensure energy conservation. The National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) has also added green audit as one of the aspects for evaluation, which has led to several colleges introducing different initiatives for energy conservation.

Principal of D G Ruparel College, Dr. Tushar Desai, said, "We have already started so many initiatives in our college starting from solar panels to changing electricity supply to it, bringing in LED lights among all with an objective of energy conservation. This is very important today. Most colleges have already started it because it is also a way to ensure appropriate expenditure. Government has stopped giving non-salary grant for several years now. Huge electricity bills are not affordable. Smart use of electricity is a great option. In our colleges electricity supply to common rooms and washrooms is through solar panels similarly to electronics department laboratory. Switch over system is also installed if sunlight is less in any day. Several other colleges are learning the system from us. "

Adding to this, Dr. Suhas Pednekar, principal of Ruia College, said, " Initial cost of solar panels is much high and we are working toward it. While UGC initiates such ideas, there are several schemes which allow financial assistance to colleges to attain the goals. At our college we have begun with students awareness in form of projects and research papers. Students of different streams are given different projects revolving around importance of energy conservation. They are asked to conduct energy audits to understand its importance."

Talking about need of UGC's instructions, Dr. Pednekar said, "There is a tendency that without instructions or linking it with important aspects like NAAC, there would be very few to take up the initiative on their own."

Dr. Vijay Joshi, principal of Somaiya College of Science said, "ours is a science college and Somaiya has an engineering Institute attached to it. We are already doing our energy audits as academic programs participated by faculty members as well as students."

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