Noorani Masjid has set an example for religious institutions across the nation by demonstrating how going solar can drastically reduce electricity bills. The biggest of mosques in Mumbai’s suburb of Malad, Noorani Masjid, situated in Pathawadi, has witnessed a 45% reduction in its monthly electricity bills after installing a 25-kilowatt rooftop solar system.
It could well be the centralized air-conditioning of this massive six-storeyed building, which can accommodate about 5000 devotees at a given time, that contributed to its once hefty electricity bills – ₹83,500! There arrives on scene 72 solar panels to the rescue, and voila – today the mosque’s electricity bill is Rs 37,400.
The 25 -kWp solar power plant produces 110 units of electricity during the hot summer months. Come Monsoon and the output drops to 80 units. The solar plant thus enables the mosque to produce 35,000 units of electricity it needs annually on its own. This translates to savings of ₹4.3 lakhs each year. Well if that isn’t impressive enough, how about saving 17.5 tons of carbon dioxide emissions! Dual savings – money + carbon dioxide emissions, seems like something we have been preaching all along!
What inspired the mosque to go solar?
As they put it, necessity is the mother of invention. Turns out, necessity is the mother of innovation as well. The Mosque authorities were plagued with the increasing electricity bills, thanks to the 60-ton AC units along with lights and fans functioning across the building. Call it Divine grace- it is against this scenario that the news of solar power generation as successful, practical and cost-effective reaches their ears. That many along South Mumbai have already opted to go solar to cope with the inflated electricity bills only added to their hope. In fact, Noorani Masjid makes the eighth of mosques to opt for solar power in the city.
Just a beginning
Time and again, we witness that there’s no stopping after one’s having witnessed the practical efficacy of solar power. Noorani Masjid is no exception. The Mosque plans to add a 25 kWp plant more to further its solar power production, with an aim to reduce 90% of its electricity bills by 2020. The authorities have confirmed that they would take full advantage of its remaining rooftop and shadow-free spaces for the second phase of the installation – after all, isn’t your rooftop your biggest untapped resource? The Mosque plans to make huge savings during the upcoming Ramzan season, a time marked for its high consumption of electricity.
The Mosque has invested ₹15.23 lakhs, which it aims to recover in three and a half years, in the solar project. Also, since the installed system is part of the net metering system, the mosque contributes 90-95 electricity units to the grid every day as well, for which it receives an additional reduction in its electricity bills.
Spreading the green, glorious message
Rashim Gulam Rasul Maredia, the chairman of the trust that runs the Noorani Masjid, has expressed their intention to spread the green and glorious message of solar power among the devotees as well. Isn’t safeguarding environment as sacred a duty towards the earth and our future generations as spirituality is? And when religious and spiritual authorities take it upon themselves to spread the message, one can well expect many among us to pay heed to the much-needed message of solar power for a secure world ahead.