Policy Roundup

Here is a renewable energy policy roundup from central, state and government agencies in India for the month of March 2017.

After the low tariffs recorded in the Rewa auction, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) released new guidelines for competitive bidding to develop solar projects.

To increase purchase of renewable energy certificates (RECs), the CERC has changed the forbearance price of solar RECs to Rs.2,400 (~$36.91)/MWh and the floor price to Rs.1,000 (~$14.962)/MWh. The forbearance price for non-solar RECs have been set to Rs.3,000 (~$46.14)/MWh and the floor price to Rs.1,000 (~$14.962)/MWh.

The states of Meghalaya, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh and Kerala joined the Ujwal DISCOM (distribution company) Assurance Yojana (UDAY) program last month.

New benchmark costs have been set for small-scale and rooftop solar projects in India.

The Government of India is formulating a solar energy program for decentralized power loom units in the country by providing financial assistance and capital subsidies for the installation of solar. Under the program, solar can be implemented as either an off-grid project or an on-grid project. Financial assistance will be provided at 50 percent, 75 percent, and 90 percent of the basic cost of the project (cost of solar panel + inverter + batteries).

The state government of Delhi released the Delhi Solar Policy 2016, which is applicable for the period, 2016-2020. The policy focuses on promoting an investment climate that enables multiple financial models, from self-owned (CAPEX) to third-party owned (RESCO) models and applies to any solar energy generating system with a capacity of 1 kW or more.

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) released the sixth amendment CERC (Grant of Connectivity, Long-term Access and Medium-term Open Access in Inter-State Transmission and related matters) Regulations 2017. Under the new regulations:

  1. Long-term access refers to the right to use the inter-state transmission system (ISTS) for a period exceeding seven years.
  2. Medium-term open access refers to the right to use the ISTS for a period equal to or exceeding 3 months but not exceeding 5 years.

The Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) proposed a new benchmark tariff of Rs.4.51 (~$0.066)/kWh for solar PV projects starting April 1, 2017.

The state government of Telangana is planning an Equated Monthly Installment (EMI)-based rooftop installation program for individual consumers.

The government has approved the increase in solar park capacity from 20,000 MW to 40,000 MW to develop a minimum of 50 solar parks of 500 MW each by financial year 2019-20.