The Forum of Regulators (FoR) has issued draft model regulation for grid-interactive distributed renewable energy sources to be followed by all states in India.
These regulations will apply to:
Prosumer Distributed Renewable Energy System (PDRES): A distributed renewable energy system set up by the prosumer under net metering or net billing
Independent Distributed Renewable Energy System (IDRES): A distributed renewable energy system set up by any person, connected to the distribution licensee network and selling electricity to the distribution companies (DISCOM) under a power purchase agreement.
The regulations will come into force from the date of notification in the official gazette.
According to the forum, the DISCOMs will implement a web-based application processing system for handling the applications for distributed renewable energy systems within three months from the date of notification of these regulations. Matters related to subsidy application will be dealt with by the state nodal agency.
Annually, the DISCOM will publish all information related to distributed renewable energy capacity added during the year and cumulative capacity on each element of the distribution system on its website. Every year, it will also submit information related to the capacity added and energy procured from these systems within one month from the end of a financial year.
The forum has directed DISCOMs to purchase 0.25%, 0.50% and 0.75% of total energy requirement from distributed renewable energy sources in FY 2020, FY 2021, and FY 2022. Distributed renewable energy generation as recorded by the generation meter will be accounted for by the DISCOM towards compliance of its renewable purchase obligation (RPO).
In case the renewable energy system is set up by an obligated entity, entire renewable energy generated by these renewable energy systems will be accounted for RPO compliance by the obligated entity.
The prosumer will be responsible for safe operation, maintenance and rectification of any defect of the renewable energy system up to the point of net meter, beyond which this responsibility will be that of the DISCOM.
The net meter will be procured, installed, and maintained by the DISCOM. However, if the prosumer wishes to procure the meter, they can procure and present them to the DISCOM for testing and installation.
The DISCOM, within three months of the date of notification of these regulations, must modify its existing billing infrastructure to facilitate the metering arrangements.
In March 2018, the forum identified the tariff and non-tariff barriers for open access, the impact of open access on revenue of DISCOMs, carried out a detailed examination of the rules for captive generation, their impact on open access, and provided suitable measures for the implementation of open access.
Recently, the Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC) for the state of Goa and union territories has issued draft net metering regulations. Of late, several states including, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, and Delhi NCR, have revised, amended or proposed new regulations to their rooftop solar net metering policies.
Saumy is a senior staff reporter with MercomIndia.com covering business and energy news since 2016. Prior to Mercom, Saumy was a copy editor at Thomson Reuters. Saumy earned his Bachelors Degree in Journalism & Mass Communication from the Manipal Institute of Communication at Manipal University. More articles from Saumy Prateek.