Week In India: DISCOMs To Be Privatized In Union Territories,KERC Grants Extension for RPO Compliance By 3 Months,India Launches 100 % Solarisation Scheme,ONGC and NTPC To Set Up Joint Venture And More

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Union Power Ministry Writes To States/UTs Extending Rs 90,000 Crore Package Under Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recently announced Rs 90,000 crore Liquidity Injection for DISCOMs and in regards to that Union Ministry of Power has written to all States/UTs extending Rs 90,000 crore financial package to assist the stressed DISCOMs. Communication in this regard has been sent on 14.05.2020.The letter sent to States/UTs mentions that REC and PFC shall immediately extend loans to DISCOMs which have headroom for further borrowing within the working capital limits prescribed under UDAY. Further, the DISCOMs that do not have headroom under UDAY working capital limits but have receivables from the State Government in the form of electricity dues and subsidy not disbursed will also be eligible for these loans to the extent of receivables from the State Government. Since these loans are long term and are not against the working capital requirement of the DISCOMs, with repayment security from the State Government, UDAY Working capital limits will not be applicable.

DISCOMs To Be Privatized In Union Territories : Ministry

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recently announced Rs 90,000 crore Liquidity Injection for DISCOMs and Union Ministry of Power writing to all States/UTs extending Rs 90,000 crore financial package now the ministry has also added some of the important schemes for the same.Policy Reforms to fast-track Investment which includes Effort towards AtmanirbharBharat • Fast track Investment Clearance through Empowered Group of Secretaries (EGoS), Project Development Cell in each Ministry to prepare investable projects, coordinate with investors and Central/ State Governments, Ranking of States on Investment Attractiveness to compete for new investments, Incentive schemes for Promotion of New Champion Sectors will be launched in sectors such as Solar PV manufacturing; Advanced cell battery storage; etc.Upgradation of Industrial Infrastructure under which scheme that will be implemented in States through Challenge mode for Industrial Cluster Upgradation of common infrastructure facilities and connectivity, Availability of Industrial Land/ Land Bank for promoting new investments and making information available on Industrial Information System (IIS) with GIS mapping,3376 industrial parks/estates/SEZs in 5 lakh hectares mapped on Industrial Information System (IIS) and All industrial parks will be ranked in 2020-21.

KERC Grants Extension for RPO Compliance By 3 Months

Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission has recently issued an order regarding RPO Compliance for FY20- Regulations.The commission stated that “ “Keeping in view the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic situation and the consequent lockdown, the Commission hereby extends the time for complying with the RPO for FY20 by three months. Thus, the obligated entities namely, Distribution Licensees, Grid-connected Captive Consumers, and Open Access Consumers may meet their RPO for FY20 by 31.08.2020. Any obligated entity failing to meet the RPO or any part of it(or FY20 within the time specified above, shall purchase RECs to the extent of 110% of quantum of the shortfall in meeting RPO by 30.09.2020, failing which the obligated entity shall be liable for action under Section 142 of the Electricity Act, 2003.”

MNRE Drafts Guidelines and model PPA for Implementation of Off-Grid Solar Power Plants in RESCO Model

Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), the nodal Ministry of the Government of India has drafted guidelines and model PPA for Implementation of Off-Grid Solar Power Plants in the RESCO model under MNRE Programme – for comments of stakeholders.Under the Phase III of Off-grid and Decentralized Solar PV Applications Programme of MNRE, off-grid solar power plants of individual size up to 25 kWp can be installed in areas where grid power has not reached or is not reliable. Such plants are mainly aimed at providing electricity to Government schools, hostels, panchayats, police stations, and other public service institutions.The order stated that “As the intended beneficiaries for off-grid solar power plants are public service institutions, there could be difficulty in arranging the beneficiary share in an upfront manner. Further, after the guarantee period is over, continuing of O&M of the plant is an issue due to the fund and technical constraints of the beneficiary. In order to effectively utilize the costly assets of the solar PV system, it has been decided that such a system should be operated through RESCO mode. These guidelines provide an implementation framework for the operation of off-grid solar PV systems through RESCO mode.”

MNRE Allows SERCs To Conduct Virtual Hearing

The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) has recently passed an order to State Electricity Regulatory Commissions (SERCs) in regards to allow the online listing of petitions and start hearing of petitions through video conferencing.The Renewable Power Developers have submitted to this Ministry that due to the extended nationwide lock-down in the wake of COVID-19, State Electricity Regulatory Commissions (SERCs) have postponed listing and hearing of the petitions. Renewable Power Developers have emphasized on the need for timely filing and disposal of petitions in SERC and have submitted that any delay in relief from the SERCs will adversely affect the financial viability of their projects.The developers have cited the precedence of Hon’ble Supreme Court, High Courts, and Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (APTEL) starting the online listing and hearing of urgent matters and have requested this Ministry to issue advisory to all State Electricity Regulatory Commissions (SERCs) to allow filing and listing of petitions online and hear urgent matters through video conferencing.  

MPERC Grants Extension To Power Transmission Companies To File MYT Petitions By 30th June 2020

Madhya Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission(MPERC) has issued an order granting time Extension to file petitions for determination of Multi-year Tariff(MYT) by Generating Companies in the State and M.P. Power Transmission Company Ltd Jabalpur by 30th June 2020. Power companies in its recent petition sought time extension up to 30.06.2020 for filing MYT petition for FY 2019- 20 to FY 2023-24.The Commission has issued and notified Madhya Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (Terms and Conditions for determination of Generation Tariff) Regulations, 2020 on 28th February 2020 and Madhya Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (Terms and Conditions for determination of Transmission Tariff) Regulations, 2020 on 14th February’ 2020.

India Launches 100 % Solarisation Scheme For Konark Town And Sun Temple In Odisha, 10 MW Planned

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has taken up the Complete Solarisation of Konark sun temple and Konark town in Odisha.Speaking about the Scheme, R K Singh said, “Government of India launched the Scheme intending to take forward the Prime Minister’s vision to develop the historical Sun temple town of Konark in Odisha as ‘Surya Nagri’, to convey a message of synergy between the modern use of solar energy and the ancient Sun Temple and the importance of promoting solar energy”.The Scheme envisages setting up of 10 MW grid-connected solar project and various solar off-grid applications like solar trees, solar drinking water kiosks, off-grid solar power plants with battery storage, etc with a 100% Central Financial Assistance (CFA) support of around Rs. 25 Crores from Government of India through Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE). The implementation of this project will be done by the Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA).

MERC Approves Tariff Proposed by MSEDCL for Procurement of 100 MW Solar Power on Long-Term Basis

Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission recently passed an order approving the tariff rate of Rs. 3.11/kWh for 100 MW Cumulative Capacity Grid Interactive Solar PV Power Projects on a long term basis for 25 years which is to be developed by Energy Efficiency Services Limited EESL.Along with the revised tariff rate commission also passed other orders regarding the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) and Power Sale Agreement (PSA).The Maharashtra State Power Generation Company Ltd. and Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd jointly filed a petition for seeking approval for tariff rate of Rs 3.11/kwh for long term procurement of power for 100 MW AC cumulative capacity of solar PV power projects in Western and Northern regions of Maharashtra under “Mukhyamantri Saur Krushi Vahini Yojana”.

ONGC and NTPC Sign MOU To Set Up Joint Venture for Renewable Energy Business

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation Limited (ONGC) and NTPC ltd are planning to set up a Joint Venture Company for Renewable Energy business. The two Maharatnas entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on 21 May 2020 in Delhi to formalize this arrangement. The MoU will enable both companies to achieve their targets in Renewable Energy business.The MOU was signed by ONGC Director (Finance) and In-charge Business Development and Joint Ventures Subhash Kumar and Director (Commercial) NTPC, A K Gupta. ONGC CMD Shashi Shanker and NTPC CMD Gurdeep Singh (on Virtual conferencing) along with the Directors of two public enterprises witnessed the occasion.As per the MoU, NTPC and ONGC will explore and set up Renewable Power assets including offshore wind, in India and overseas, and explore opportunities in the fields of sustainability, storage, E-mobility and ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) compliant projects.

CERC Sanctioned Tariff Rate Of 2.69 kWh for Wind- Solar Hybrid Power Project

Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) issued an order in the matter of SECI against four respondents (Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Adani Renewable Energy Park (Gujarat) Limited, Punjab State Power Corporation Limited, India Power Corporation Limited) for the adoption of tariff for 600 MW (out of 1200 MW) Wind- Solar Hybrid Power Projects (Tranche-II) connected to the Inter-State Transmission System and selected through a competitive bidding process.Solar Energy Corporation of India Ltd.(SECI) made the following prayers: “(a) Admit the present Petition; (b) Adopt the tariff discovered in the competitive bid process for the individual power projects as stated in the PPAs with the Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Developer and trading margin of Rs. 0.07/kWh (as mutually agreed between the parties) to be recovered from the Buying Utilities/Distribution Licensees in terms of the PSA.”

MERC Approves RFS and PPA Document for 1350 MW Tender Floated by MSEDCL

Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission(MERC) recently passed an order approving the RfS and PPA document floated by Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Ltd. (MSEDCL) for 1350 MW tender under ‘Mukhyamantri Saur Krishi Vahini Yojana’.MSEDCL’s main plea was: a) To accord approval for adoption of tariff for 283 MW of projects and signing of PPA with the successful bidder for 283 MW solar power as discovered through Competitive bidding conducted by MSEDCL. b) To accord approval to the RfS and PPA document floated for 1350 MW tender under MSKVY. The petition is filed under the provisions of Section 63 of The Electricity Act, 2003 (EA) for meeting the Solar Renewable Purchase Obligations (RPO).

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