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OERC Approves Tariff Of Rs. 7.25/kWh For 25 MW Solar Power Project

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OERC Approves Tariff Of Rs. 7.25/kWh For 25 MW Solar Power Project

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The power purchase agreement (PPA) between Grid Corporation of Odisha (GRIDCO) and ACME Odisha Solar Power to acquire power from a 25 MW solar power plant at a tariff of Rs. 7.25/kWh has been authorized by the Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC).

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By proposing Rs. 7.28/kWh, as the tariff, ACME Odisha Solar Power (formerly known as ACME Bikaner Solar Power) won the auction held by the Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA) in 2012 to commission a 25 MW solar power plant.

In 2013, the project’s site was altered, and in 2015, it was finally put into operation. Then, a 25-year PPA had been signed between GRIDCO and ACME, and since 2015, ACME has been providing power to GRIDCO.

The power distribution company, TP Western Odisha Distribution (TPWODL) responded, claiming there had been a nine-year delay in submitting the PPA for the Commission’s approval, and it would be advantageous for all parties involved to renegotiate the present tariff in light of market trends for solar energy.

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The latest prices allowed by the Commission and GRIDCO, according to TPWODL, are much lower than Rs. 7.28/kWh, and the current bidding trend for ACME is approximately Rs. 2.43/kWh.

OREDA claims that the CERC benchmark tariff in 2012 was Rs. 10.39/kWh, and the solar market tariff ranged from Rs. 10/kWh to Rs. 12/kWh, making the tariff of Rs. 7.28/kWh competitive.

The existing capacity utilization factor (CUF), the projected cost of operation and maintenance per megawatt, the cause of the project’s shift in site, and the modification in the variation of contract capacity were all issues that the Commission brought up during the hearing.

In the fiscal year 2022–2023, according to ACME, it has been producing and providing solar electricity to GRIDCO with a CUF of 20.6%.

Because there was less solar power available in the State in 2013 to satisfy the GRIDCO RPO requirements, GRIDCO allowed purchasing solar power with a +20% CUF variation with no adjustment in the lower slab of (-)10% variation.

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Due to a lack of contiguous land, according to ACME, the project’s site was altered. The PPA’s contracted capacity, 25 MW, remained the same despite the shift of site. 

The PPA’s regularization was not opposed by any of the respondents, thus the Commission authorized a tariff of Rs. 7.25/kWh in place of Rs. 7.28/kWh.

Additionally, the Commission decided that the solar project should be considered a must-run and would not be subject to dispatch by merit order.

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