Karnataka Reduces Banking Period for Solar and Other Renewable Energy Projects

The Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) has reduced the banking period of renewable energy projects from one year to six months.

“In partial modification of the KERC order dated July 4, 2014, the banking period for the non- renewable energy certificate (REC) route based renewable energy projects, opting for wheeling, is reduced from the existing one year to six months,” the order issued by KERC stated.

While KERC has specified January to June as the banking period for wind projects, for mini-hydel power projects the banking period has been set from July to December. For solar power projects, April to September and October to March have been set as the banking period.

For wind and mini-hydel projects, the new regulation will be in effect from July 1, 2018. The amount of energy banked under the existing banking facility from April to June 2018 will be carried forward to the July to December period. For solar power projects, the new regulation will be applicable from April 1, 2018.

Any unutilized banked energy remaining at the end of six months will be considered to have been purchased by the distribution company (DISCOM) in that area. For this, the DISCOM will pay at the rate of 85 percent of the applicable generic tariff during the period.

The energy banked by the non-REC route based renewable energy projects during the peak Time of Day (ToD) hours can only be drawn during the peak ToD hours.

Mercom previously reported that KERC released a discussion paper that called for increasing the wheeling and banking charges for solar, wind and other renewable energy projects developed under a non-REC route in Karnataka. KERC has proposed levying a 25 percent tariff on normal transmission charges and/or wheeling charges.

Recently, the KERC also proposed a tariff of ₹2.79 (~$0.043)/kWh for new, MW-scale, grid-connected solar photovoltaic (PV) projects developed across the state.

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