The Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission (JERC) for the state of Goa and union territories has finalized the net metering regulations. The new rules have been in effect since July 24, 2019.
These regulations will apply to grid-connected rooftop-mounted, ground-mounted and floating solar PV power projects in Goa and the union territories of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Chandigarh, Dadar & Nagar Haveli, Daman & Diu, Lakshadweep, and Puducherry.
Under the new regulations, the group net metering framework will apply to all the consumers. The virtual net metering framework will apply to all residential consumers, group housing societies, and establishments of government and local authorities.
Solar projects of a minimum capacity of 5 kW and a maximum capacity of 500 kW at a single location will be eligible for grid connectivity. Solar projects of capacity higher than 500 kW can be considered by the distribution company (DISCOM) if the distribution system remains stable with the project getting connected to the grid.
The JERC had issued the draft net metering regulations in May 2019, and the final regulations have a few additions to the draft.
In case of a third-party-owned solar PV project, the consumer can lease out the rooftop space or land or water body to a solar project developer on a mutual commercial arrangement for setting up the project under the net metering framework.
The consumer will pay the developer for all the energy generated at a mutually agreed tariff. The commercial arrangement between the developer and the prosumer will be submitted to the DISCOM for records, and the DISCOM will not have any role in such a commercial agreement. All the provisions of the net metering framework will apply. Such solar PV projects set up under these regulations will be exempted from open access restrictions and associated charges, including losses.
The solar PV projects, whether self-owned or third-party owned installed under these regulations, will be exempted from banking charges. Now, the solar energy generated for captive use will also qualify for Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO). The solar power generated by an eligible consumer in a net metering arrangement will not qualify for the issue of renewable energy certificate (REC).
Last year, the JERC issued a set of regulations dealing with power generation, transmission, and distribution. With these moves, the joint commission is trying to expedite the growth of renewable energy in the country, especially solar.
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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.