Indian cricket delegation visits solarised soccer stadiums in Germany

A delegation of senior officials from Board of Control for Cricket in India and State Cricket Associations, visited Germany from 28th of May to 4th of June, 2017 to get an insight into best practices in constructing and retrofitting sport stadiums with solar technology. The tour was organised by GIZ India.

Members of the Board of Control For Cricket In India (BCCI) and high ranking officials from eight State Cricket Associations visited four solarised soccer stadiums in Germany as part of their visit to Intersolar Europe 2017, world’s largest international solar exhibition. The visit focused on giving the delegates an insight into best practices in constructing and retrofitting sport stadiums with solar technology.
The tour was organised by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and Indo-German Energy Forum (IGEF) as part of its Green Wicket project with support from Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), German Solar Association (BSW) and Indo-German Chamber of Commerce (IGCC).
As part of Sustainability in Sports – Solarising Soccer and Cricket Tour, the delegates visited the solarised soccer stadiums in Mainz, Kaiserslautern, Hoffenheim and Freiburg. The tour started with a guided visit of the Opel Arena stadium in Mainz and its rooftop solar power plant which was organised by the project developer Juwi, one of Germany’s leading international solar companies. The interaction at Mainz ended with a visit to a larger 4 MW solar park and a 2 MW wind turbine. The delegates next visited the Fritz-Walter Stadium in Kaiserslautern where the delegates got a glimpse into the history of the stadium as well as the implementation of the solar rooftop by developer Solar PV Energiedach. On their way to Munich, the delegation also visited the soccer stadium in Hoffenheim and witnessed a solar carport built by WIRSOL. The idea of building a car port was fascinating to the delegates, as it is cost effective compared to a solar photovoltaic plant on the roof of the stadium and because it can easily be extended at any time.

The soccer stadium tour ended in Freiburg, the Eco-City of Germany. The delegation met the Mayor of Freiburg who explained them the concept and salient features of the Eco City concept. Thereafter the delegation visited the Freiburg football stadium. The installed rooftop solar plant is functioning well since 15 years which aroused curiosity among the delegates to learn about their maintenance practices.

In addition to visiting the solarised soccer stadiums across Germany, the delegation attended the Intersolar Europe 2017 in Munich, the world´s leading exhibition for the solar industry, where they got insights into latest developments. The delegation also participated in the “Indo-German Energy Dialogue and Business Roundtable on Photovoltaic-Rooftop Development in India” on 1st June 2017 organised by the Indo-German Energy Forum (IGEF). Together with key persons from the Indian and German PV-Rooftop market, the roundtable was presided over by Mr. Piyush Goyal, Hon’ble Union Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines, Government of India who interacted with the Cricket Delegation and motivated them to implement Solar technology.

Mr. Joerg Gaebler, Principal Advisor of Solar and Green Wicket project, GIZ said “Traveling with the delegation from different Indian State Cricket Associations in Germany was one of the most delightful experiences for us. Now the challenge is to motivate each stadium for implementing best practices of solarisation at their respective stadiums and bring sustainability pan India through the sport of cricket.”

Mr. T.C. Mathew, Vice President of BCCI, said that the visit to different soccer stadiums, the solar exhibition Intersolar 2017 on latest technologies in Munich and the workshop conducted by IGEF was very fruitful.

Hon’ble Minister for Power, Mr. Piyush Goyal directed that all cricket stadiums in India should go solar within a year. The cricket delegation responded positively to his request and assured that steps will be taken at the appropriate forums of BCCI in this regard. The minister also gave the delegation the assurance to facilitate necessary support from SECI for implementing these measures.

Modern, solarised stadiums are acting as role models to promote green and sustainable living. In order to promote solar rooftops through sports, the Green Wicket project has already supported the installation of a 400 kW solar photovoltaic rooftop power plant on the Chinnaswamy stadium in Bengaluru along with other sustainable measures such as rain water harvesting, waste water recycling, and solid waste management. Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) in cooperation with Solar Energy Cooperation of India (SECI) now has aligned with GIZ to support solarisation of stadiums.