CERC Allows Issue of Renewable Energy Certificates for Wind Energy Injected in FY 2015-16

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC), in a recent order, relaxed the timeframe to apply for the issuance of the Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) to a wind generator beyond six months for the energy injected into the grid.

It directed the National Load Despatch Center (NLDC) to accept the energy injection reports of the petitioner issued by the state load dispatch center (SLDC) and the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) and issue RECs for April 2015 to March 2016.

The Central Commission said that the delay in submission of the energy injection reports for the issuance of the RECs was not the generator’s fault, and it was a result of the delay in grant of open access permission by MSEDCL.

CERC said that the order should not be quoted as a precedent and clarified that the compliance with the provisions of the REC Regulations and the detailed procedure should continue to be the prerequisites to consider applications for the issue of RECs.


Tata Motors had filed a petition with CERC seeking issuance of RECs from April 2015 to March 2016.

Background

Tata Motors is engaged in generating renewable energy from wind energy sources. The company owns and operates 21.95 MW of wind energy projects in Maharashtra. The projects are for captive use.

The company, in its submission, said that it had obtained accreditation from the state agency and registration from the central agency, and RECs were issued by NLDC from time to time. Also, there was a delay in the grant of open access permission for the financial year (FY) 2015-16.

The company filed a petition with the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) as it was not granted open access permission from April 2015 to October 2015 by MSEDCL. MERC directed MSEDCL to grant open access to the petitioner for captive wind energy from April 2015 to October 2015 and issue credit notes for the energy injected during the relevant period.

According to the order, MSEDCL issued open access permission from April 2015 to October 2015. Later the MSEDCL was also late in granting open access permission from November 5, 2015, to March 31, 2016.

After that, Tata Motors wrote to NLDC seeking issuance of RECs from November 5, 2015, to March 31, 2016. Despite complying with all the requirements for the issuance of RECs, the company did not receive copies of RECs from November 5, 2015, to March 31, 2016.

On receipt of the open access permission, credit reports, REC proforma, and energy injection reports from MSEDCL, the company approached SLDC for the issuance of the energy injection reports. Without the energy injection reports, application for issuance of the RECs is not possible.

The company, in its submission, said that the application for the allotment of RECs could not be made on account of gross defaults of MSEDCL and delay in issuance of the energy injection reports.

Commission’s analysis

The Commission observed that because of the delay in MSEDCL granting open access permission for FY 2015-16, the generator could not submit an application for the issue of RECs within the stipulated period of six months of the corresponding generation from its renewable energy project.

The Commission said that upon receipt of the open access permissions, credit reports, REC proforma, and energy injection reports from MSEDCL, the generator approached SLDC, Maharashtra, to obtain energy injection reports as required the issuance of RECs. However, by the time the generator received such energy injection reports, the stipulated period of six months had already lapsed.

The Commission noted that the generator was not responsible for the delay in issuing the energy injection reports. The denial of RECs on the ground of submission of the applications beyond the stipulated period would go against the objective and spirit of promoting renewable energy generation.

Considering all the facts, the Central Regulator relaxed the requirement of six months to make the application as stipulated in REC Regulations. It directed NLDC to accept the applications of the generator along with the energy injection reports issued by SLDC and MSEDCL and issue RECs from April 2015 to March 2016.

In July last year, CERC had directed NLDC to issue RECs due to a renewable generator. The certificates were not issued because of procedural delays on the part of the Uttar Pradesh State Load Despatch Center.

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