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Solar-powered boat starts service

Solar-powered boat starts service

Kottayam: Launching a solar-powered boat service at Vaikom in the district, Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal Thursday said the Centre would extend support to introduce more such boats in Keralas waters as it is keen to promote environment friendly projects.

Goyal launched the service in Vaikom-Cherthala-Thavanakadavu waterways along with Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan.

The first solar-powered boat was launched recently by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Varanasi, Goyal said.

Power production from solar energy that stood at 2000 MW in 2014 has gone up to 9500 MW at present, he said, adding, the target was to take the production level to one lakh MW by 2020.

Vijayan said the government is committed to strengthening water transport in the state.

Infrastructure for low cost and environment friendly transport system would be upgraded, he said, adding, introduction of more solar-powered boats could make water transport a profitable one. The solar-powered boat, introduced by the State Water Transport Corporation, can accommodate 75 passengers. The boat service would be from 7 AM to 7 PM evening, State Transport Minister A K Saseedharan said.

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