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This Bengaluru Man Can Run an Air-Conditioned House Without Paying a Rupee in Electricity Bills

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Ugadi is one of the biggest festivals in Karnataka, and marked with holiday and merriment. Bengaluru resident Dinesh Pagariya has more than one reason for celebration.

His new house is slated for a housewarming and pooja on the day, but that isn’t the only reason. Even before its formal inauguration, Dinesh’s house has captured attention for its completely eco-friendly initiative.

Dinesh’s new house has successfully harnessed solar energy from scratch, and did not seek even a temporary Bescom connection.

A city-based real-estate developer and nature enthusiast, Dinesh has always emphasized on living a green life, from running an off-grid office operation to taking an electric-powered car over conventional vehicles. “I keep renewable energy as the criteria for all my activities.” He found himself deeply interested in solar energy and found an opportunity to incorporate the technology when he built his cousin’s house two years earlier.

“We wondered why we should have to keep taking power from the electricity department,” he says. “Why don’t we generate our own power? My cousin’s house was somewhat smaller in size, and I thought that I could fix any errors more efficiently.”

There were no errors and the construction success motivated the builder to take a more ambitious approach. He decided to build his new house, in Bengaluru’s Jayanagar neighbourhood, on the same principles of solar-powered energy.

Built in 12 months, the house has set new standards in green construction, setting up a solar unit at the site from the very beginning.

While installing solar units is becoming popular among many ecologically conscious people, to use solar power during construction remains somewhat rare. Builders and architects remain somewhat sceptical of the process of green architecture. Fortunately, Dinesh found an ally in his architect, Ganesh Kumar of Studio 69, who encouraged him to continue the project despite the initial challenges.

Ganesh says, “I always try to make an environmentally-conscious angle in my building. If there is a tree, I plan the architecture around it. Dinesh approached me after he saw some of my houses. He has a beautiful plot—I kept the solar energy in mind before starting and also the trees. It wasn’t as challenging as it seems because he was clear about what he wanted.”

Construction began with the installation of a small power plant atop the worker’s shed. The plant was upgraded as the building proceeded and eventually shifted in a higher capacity over the completed house.

Further, Dinesh and his team employed thin solar panels, conventionally used for commercial solar power generation, which makes it possible to generate full power on cloudy days. These thin panels can also be stepped on and the engineering team installed over 100 panels on the rooftop to generate all the electricity needed.

The only challenge in undertaking such an ambitious initiative, according to Dinesh, is in the mind.

A self-confessed fan of Elon Musk, Dinesh says that a challenge in his venture was really the hesitation in getting started. “Initially it looked challenging but my architect encouraged me and it gradually got easier. We hoped to finish in one year and that is exactly what we have done. And now we have a fully air-conditioned house, which runs on renewable energy.”

Following the success of his solar ventures, Dinesh has also founded JJJ Solar, a renewable energy firm where he is joined by like-minded experts who he had worked with on previous projects. Invested in eco-friendly principles, they hope to educate people on renewable energy and collaborate to build more solar-powered commercial properties as well as houses.

To contact Dinesh Pagariya’s team at JJJ Solar, click here.

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