#Global warming is gradually becoming a matter of concern and the world is trying to do away with fossil fuels that generate CO2. This leads to the greenhouse gas effect which is one of the factors contributing to this phenomenon. #Solar Energy is totally clean and devoid of any side effect. #Kerala is the southernmost state of India, and it has taken the initiative to start a solar-powered ferry service last year.

Indian Express reports that the service is committed to promoting green transport, and has been operating in the Vembanad lagoon with a 75-seater ferry and has caught the fancy of the people. This lagoon is considered to be a vulnerable ecosystem and needs green technologies to check the effects of pollution.

Advantages of solar power

The ferry service does 22 trips daily and plies between the jetties of Vaikom and Thavanakkadavu on either bank of the Vembanad. There are diesel operated wooden conventional boats in the region also but the new era ferry using solar power saves time, is silent unlike the diesel boats and is economical.

The solar panels are installed on the roof of the boat and the electrical energy generated is stored in lithium-ion phosphate batteries which provide power to the electric motors to propel the boat. These batteries are expensive but have the advantage of being light-weight and long-lasting. Moreover, they help to curb global warming and Kerala deserves praise for pioneering a mini-revolution in commuting.

It saves on operating costs

This ferry service moves silently and leaves no carbon footprint.

It reduces the operating cost by saving more than 40,000 liters of diesel per boat and there are four of them right now. The maintenance cost is negligible and it reduces global warming by eliminating CO2 emissions. There are plans to build a bigger double-deck air-conditioned ferries that will use solar-power and can carry 100 passengers. It could be used in tourist-circuits of Alappuzha.

Kerala is a favorite tourist destination and is labeled as ‘Gods own country’ with its waterways and lagoons. It is proud of its tourism and the lush greenery. Deccan Chronicle adds that Kerala Tourism has begun to woo the international community in real earnest by attending trade fairs in different places. It has planned as many as 12 trade fairs and 24 roadshows as part of its campaign. Some of the countries are Netherlands, Spain, US, Italy, Germany, and France.