Eden Renewable's 50 MW Solar Project in Uttar Pradesh Gets Deadline Extension

The Uttar Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (UPERC) allowed an extension of the scheduled commissioning date (SCOD) of a 50 MW solar project in Chitrakoot district. The project is being developed by Eden Renewable Jasmin Private Limited. The deadline has been extended by seven months and two weeks.

Background

Eden Renewable Jasmin Private Limited- a subsidiary of solar project developer Eden Renewables – had filed the petition before UPERC. The SCOD was 21 months from the day the power purchase agreement (PPA) was signed. It was scheduled to be commissioned by September 20, 2020.

Eden Renewables had won the 50 MW project at a tariff of ₹3.21 (~$0.0432)/kWh in the 500 MW solar auction. UPNEDA had retendered the 500 MW of grid-connected solar PV capacity to be developed across the state in July 2018, after the annulment of 1 GW auction in which tariffs quoted had gone north of ₹3.40 (~$0.0457)/kWh.


The petitioner had cited difficulties in getting all the required approvals for the project from government authorities. It had requested a six-month extension for getting necessary approvals for land procurement from UPPCL. Since the financial closure deadline was still three months away, the request for an extension was put aside. The developer finally got all the clearances on December 5, 2019. An extension of seven months and two weeks was then allowed for the financial closure of the project.

Eden Renewables had sought the commissioning extension from the commission after the Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency’s (UPNEDA) had already sanctioned a seven month and two-week extension for land acquisition and financial closure on December 19, 2019. The agency had not specified any extension of the commissioning timeline and asked the developer to seek the regulator’s approval.

The company had earlier approached the Uttar Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (UPPCL), but the latter directed Eden Renewables to approach the UPERC. The project has 100% foreign direct investment (FDI), and the developer had stated in its petition that the lenders would pull out of the project if the SCOD was not extended.

In its judgment, the state regulator stated that delay in the SCOD is due to factors beyond the petitioner’s control. So, the commission accepted the petitioner’s prayers for the extension by seven months and two weeks from September 20, 2020. Other terms of the PPA remain unaltered.

Last year, Total Eren and EDF Renewables signed 25-year long term PPAs for four solar power projects with an installed capacity of 716 MW. These projects are located in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Out of the four PPAs, Eden entered three PPAs for two solar projects of 98 MW (equivalent to 70 MW AC capacity) each and one of 70 MW (equivalent to 50 MW AC capacity) with the UPPCL.

According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, Uttar Pradesh has 973 MW of large-scale solar projects in operation, and about 1.7 GW capacity is currently under development.