MNRE amends the land allotment clause in the solar park projects guidelines

Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) recently announced amendments in two guidelines for setting up a grid-connected solar PV power projects for 2000 MW and 5000 MW along with Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for Batch III & Batch IV, Phase II NSM respectively. The amendments are as below:

Guidelines for setting up a grid-connected solar PV power projects for 2000 MW along with Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for Batch III  Phase II NSM

Guidelines for setting up a grid-connected solar PV power projects for 5000 MW along with Viability Gap Funding (VGF) for Batch IV  Phase II NSM

The amendments are assumed to have come into existence due to the slow interest in the tenders due to lack of land allotments and the financial issues related to it. Currently, around 7% of the total installed capacity is from solar. But lately, the solar installations have taken a back seat due to issues like anti-dumping tariffs, and confusion in the GST rate.

MOP DETERMINES GUIDELINES FOR FOR COMPETITIVE BIDDING FOR POWER PROCUREMENT FROM SOLAR PV PROJECTS

The Ministry of Power (MoP) has released the guidelines for procurement of power from grid connected solar PV power projects. The guidelines are applicable to solar PV projects of size 5 MW and above. The purpose of these guidelines is to provide a direction for proper electricity procurement by distribution licensees and to protect the interest of the consumers. Also to make this process transparent and uniform.

 

Following are the salient features of the guidelines:

 

  • The appropriate Commission shall be CERC only in case if the distribution licensee is located in more than one state

  • SERCs will be the appropriate commission in case if there is a single distribution licensee.

  • The conditions to be met by the procurer are as follows:

  • The bid document should be prepared in accordance with the guidelines of MoP and the Standard Bidding Documents.

  • Clearances need to be procured from the end procurer, the agency developing the solar park.

  • Procurer has to specify where the project has been set up.

  • The bid structure shall be as follows:

  • The bids will be designed in terms of packages where the minimum will be 50 MW and the bids may be in energy quantity or power capacity terms.

  • The procurer may opt for either ‘tariff as bidding parameter’ or ‘VGF as the bidding parameter’.

  • The PPA period should not be less than 25 years and it can be in terms of energy or power. Repowering will be allowed from time to time for the duration of the PPA.

  • In case of default by the power generator, it shall be liable to pay the solar power generator as written in the PPA. Also, in such a case, the lender shall be allowed to exercise their right to substitution as per the substitution agreement provided in the PPA.

  • In case if the procurer is at default, it shall give its part of the PPA to a third party in the given time. In case if that is not done, the solar generators have a choice to terminate the PPA.

  • Once the procurer calls for bids, a single stage bidding process shall be followed. The procurer can also chose if an e-reverse auction shall be held. It is the responsibility of the procurer to give the details of the bidding process in case of a Solar park specific project.

  • For bid submission and evaluation, the bidders may form a consortium and chose a leader who shall be the focal point of contact. Also, for evaluation of bids, the procurer may form a committee. The technical and price bids shall be submitted separately along with a bid guarantee. Minimum number of bidders should be two and a proper methodology shall be followed for bid evaluation.

  • A 30 day period shall be given for bid submission from the issuance of RfS document. A table containing the time table for bid process is given in the guidelines attached below.

  • Bank guarantees such as earnest money deposit and performance bank guarantee need to be submitted.

The guidelines can be accessed here.

MNRE Scheme for setting up of 1000 MW CTU-connected Wind Power Projects

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy recently sanctioned the scheme for setting up of 1000MW CTU- connected Wind Power Projects by Wind Project Developers on build, own and operate basis. However, the capacity may go higher than 1000 MW, if there is higher demand from Discoms of non-windy States.

The Government of India has set an ambitious target of target of achieving 175 GW power capacity from renewable energy resources by 2022 and out of this 60 GW to come from wind power.

In order to facilitate transmission of wind power from these windy States to non-windy States provisions have been made in the Tariff Policy to waive the inter-state transmission charges and losses for wind power projects.

Some of the important highlights are:

  • The selection of wind power projects under the Scheme will be through a transparent e-bidding process followed by e-reverse auction for eligible bidders for procurement of wind power at tariff discovered through open competitive bidding process. SECI will develop guidelines for e-bidding process.
  • MNRE will play an important role by issuing Guidelines for transparent bidding process for implementation of the Scheme.
  • SECI will develop a suitable mechanism for monitoring the performance of the projects and will act as the nodal agency for implementation of this Scheme.
  • The objective of the scheme includes:
    • To facilitate supply of wind power to the non-windy states at a price discovered through transparent bidding process;
    • To encourage competitiveness through scaling up of project sizes and introduction of efficient and transparent e-bidding and e-auctioning processes
    • To facilitate fulfillment of Non Solar Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO) requirement of non-windy states.

The full article can be accessed here.

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