The Honourable President of India, Pratibha Devi Singh Patil (second from left) handing the awards to the winners: The Bank of Maharashtra received the Best Bank Award for the five-year Solar Water Heating Systems Loan Programme (2002-2007). Photo: Bank of Maharashtra
The Bank of Maharashtra, a public sector company and the leading bank in the state of Maharashtra, has received several awards for their impressive commitment when it comes to disbursing loans and, thus, financing residential solar thermal systems in India. In the last nine years, the bank issued interest-reduced loans to 17,472 families to finance their solar water heaters (see the following table). It used the subsidized loans the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy offered for such a programme. The following table shows the number of solar water heating systems the bank has been financing.
|Year||Beneficiaries||Amount disbursed Indian Rupees (INR) million|
|Until March 2005||8,853||296.32|
Number of beneficiaries participating in the loan programme of the Maharashtra Bank
Source: Maharashtra Bank
The bank already received several awards on a national level, for example, as being the best financial institution in the solar thermal residential sector for two consecutive years (2000-2001 & 2001-2002) and for the year 2005-06. It could also claim the Best Bank Award, recognizing the best performance on financing individual systems (see photo above), which it received from the hands of the Honourable President of India for the five-year Solar Water Heating Systems Loan Programme (2002-2007).
The bank had the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) carry out a study on exploring the possibility of bundling bank-financed systems to benefit from Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) incentives in the process (see attached document). A single collector system financed by the bank until March 2005 could achieve 5 tons of CO2 per year, according to a visibility study. This, again, corresponds to an average of 0.7 CER (Certified Emission Reductions) per system and year. The bank would therefore gain around 100 US$ during the ten-year life cycle of a system, based on an average price of US$ 15 per CER.
This text was written by Jaideep Malaviya, an Indian journalist and solar thermal expert. email@example.com