Week in India: AIIB Expects An Investment Of $100m, Q3 Solar Power Installations Increase by 36%, Wind and Hybrid Power Policies, and more

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Solar Power Installations Increased in India by 36% yoy at 2,170 Mw in Q3

Installations of solar power have increased by 36% year on year during the quarter 3 in the year 2019. The installations have increased to 2,170 Mw from 1,592 Mw which was an year ago. If we compare these numbers with the previous quarter of 2019, the installations have rose by 44%.  However, solar installations in the first nine months of 2019 reached 5.4 gigawatts (Gw), down 19 per cent from 6.7 Gw of capacity added in the first nine months of 2018, according to Mercom India Research. In Q3 of 2019, large scaled installations have totalled to about 1,925 Mw as compared to the 1,218 Mw in Q2 2019 and 1,157 Mw in Q3 of 2018. The large-scale solar project development pipeline for the country has increased to 22.6 Gw. About 37 Gw of solar has been tendered and was pending auction at the end of the quarter.

SECI Amends The 1.95 MW Solar Tender For Lakshadweep Islands

SECI has made some changes for its tender for the development of 1.95 MW of solar projects in the union territory of Lakshadweep. SECI had issued the tender for the development of the project with 2.15 MW of battery energy storage systems (BESS) in September 2019. Now, the amended version states that instead of the CUF, the contractor must demonstrate the committed availability factor at the end of every year. SECI has also revised the time and commissioning of the projects at respective islands. For the 150 kW solar project at BangaRam Island and 100 kW project at Thinnakara Island, the commissioning timeframe has been amended to 12 months from the previous timeline of six months.  The commissioning timeline of 12 months for Agatti Island (300 kW) and Kavaratti Island (1,400 kW) remains the same. SECI has amended the functional guarantee clause, and the second component of functional guarantee will now include the minimum annual plant availability. Moreover, SECI has also revised the format of the Schedule of Rates (SOR) for this tender, which will supersede the earlier SOR format.

NTPC Raised An O&M Tender For A 15 MW Solar Project In Madhya Pradesh

The NTPC, National Thermal Power Corporation has raised an operation and maintenance tender for a 15 MW solar power project installed at Jayant, Singrauli in Madhya Pradesh. The set for the submission of the bids is November 27, 2019, while the bid opening date has been set scheduled for November 29, 2019. The bidders who are interested in this tender have to pay a sum of INR 200,000 as the earnest money deposit to participate in this tender. The scope of work for this project includes round the clock deployment of a qualified engineer and a highly skilled technician for each shift for an uninterrupted operation and monitoring of the solar project. The work also involves continuous monitoring of various parameters of the solar project and hourly logging of all important operational parameters. The successful bidder must ensure the generation and compilation of all types of available reports through SCADA.  The bidders should assure the deployment of a minimum of 16 unskilled workers per day who would be required for the washing of 62,640 solar panels six days a week.

Government Of Andhra Pradesh Makes Amendments To Its Policies On Solar, Wind And Hybrid Power

On Monday, the government of Andhra Pradesh made several amendments to the policies on solar, wind and hybrid power, primarily to withdraw the facilities for energy banking drawal that was purportedly causing a huge financial drain on the power distribution companies (Discoms). Jagan Mohan Reddy’s government said according to the statutory audit reported that there is an abnormal spurt in power purchase cost and deteriorated financial position of the discoms. The government said that the injection of energy between synchronisation and declaration of Commercial Operation Date shall be treated as inadvertent power and no cost shall be paid by the Discoms. As per the January policy the bank energy which has not been utilised will be considered as deemed purchase by Discoms at 50 percent of the average pooled power purchase cost. Payment for the deemed purchase was, however, set as 10 percent of the total energy banked during the applicable year. Challenging the government decision, over 40 power producers approached the state high court which has referred the matter to the APERC. There were other significant changes made to the policy the government altered the tariff stating that it should not exceed the difference between pooled variable cost and balancing cost for any variable renewable energy project.

Delays In Tariff Adoption Are Hindering Investments And Jobs In The Solar Sector

According to Electricity Act 2003, authorities such as the state electricity regulatory commissions (SERCs) are expected to adopt tariffs that have been discovered through a transparent bidding process. The tariff approval procedure a formality that was compiled on time in order to let the developers proceed with the construction of power projects. Now the procedure has been amended. The solar or wind auctions conclude, the tariffs discovered by the respective projects have to be approved by the SERCs. The auctioning authorities submit a formal petition to the commission, which is expected to give its approval. While this process takes place, developers meanwhile have time to sign the power purchase agreements (PPAs) with the off-takers. However, in the last year and a half, several SERCs have been delaying the procedure of tariff adoption due to a number of reasons. This procedure has led to a delay that have complicated the project development process. There have been several reports related to getting approvals, developers being asked to match with the lowest tariff, and many other reports like these were noted.

Nation’s Largest Solar Project, Rs 50k Cr Will Be Completed In 4 Yrs: Amit Shah

Amit Shah, the Union Home Minister said that the country’s largest solar project of 7.5 GW which is worth Rs. 50k Crore will be completed in four years. In addition to this he further added that this project will bring development in the Ladakh region and will also create employment opportunities. This outlet will help in addressing the problem faced by the Ladakh people due to loss of fluidity in diesel during extreme winter conditions. Shah said, the people of Ladakh, Leh and Kargil will enjoy the same rights and will be an equal partner in the development of the country.

AIIB To Expect An Investment Of $100m A Year In India’s Solar, Wind Projects

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a Beijing based company is expecting an annual private investment worth $100 million a year in solar and wind projects in India from next month. AIIB is in plans to tap almost a $100 million green and renewable projects in India from next month, according to the bank’s Director General Pang Yee Ean. While addressing the South Asian Diaspora Convention on Saturday he also mentioned that India will witness an approval of projects in the renewable energy sector (in India). He also said that ‘I would say each year there would be a $100 million in the private sector for renewable projects.’ According to Pang, the private investments in renewable energy sector in India might be foreign direct investment which might relieve the Indian government of the financing challenges of the project.

Tamil Nadu Commission To Review The Tariff Order For Renewable, Instructed By APTEL

The Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (APTEL) has asked the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission’s (TNERC) to pass a new tariff order for power procured from renewable sources. This instruction came across after a petition was filed by the National Solar Energy Federation of India Limited (NSEFI) and Welspun Renewables Energy Private Limited (WREPL) which challenged the state’s tariff order. The petition stated that the state commission has acted contrary to its regulations on power utilisation from new and renewable sources. They petitioned against TNSERC’s order that claiming that the tariffs were irrational, were set arbitrarily, and were not based on sound legal, regulatory and economic principles. In addition to it they also mentioned that the TNSERC that they did not set the tariffs according to each state’s specific financial and operational requirements. After which, APTEL noted that there is no clear direction in the TNSERC hence they were instructed to review the tariff.

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