NTPC has been quick to make use of the government’s permission to allow state-owned generators...
NTPC has been quick to make use of the government’s permission to allow state-owned generators the flexibility of selling renewable power under the existing power purchase agreements for coal-based plants, according to a top official of the company. This would allow it to reap the benefit of cheaper renewable power while also reducing its carbon footprint. The company even has the flexibility to exploit this opportunity by cutting down generation at its plants and supply renewable power instead.
The official said NTPC would be able to sell this power at the same rate at which it had contracted to sell the coal-based power under the PPA.
“If there is loss because of blending of renewable power, then we will have to absorb it. If there is a profit, we will give 50 per cent rebate in their annual bill,” the official said, adding that since sale of renewable power attracts nil inter-state transmission service fee, it would be quite easy for the company to benefit from the new provision. There’s a caveat though: renewable plants which already have PPAs against them cannot be used to supply power under this mechanism.
The government has even floated a tender to buy 2,000 MW of solar and wind power combined to use the leeway provided by the ministry of power.
Under the Paris accord on climate change, the Indian government has committed to 40 per cent of its installed power capacity based on renewable sources by 2030. Towards meeting this objective while also making it viable, it expects the states and their distribution companies to buy 17 per cent of their power demand from sources based on renewables by March 2019.
NTPC has formulated a long-term corporate plan to become a 130 GW company by 2032. The company has set a target to have 30 per cent of its own capacity based on renewables by then. Its total installed capacity is 53,651 MW (including joint ventures). Of this, only 1,728 MW comes from renewable sources as of now.The official, quoting from the figures available with him then, said the company registered 6 per cent year-on-year growth in its power generation to 265 billion units in 2017-18.