The Maharashtra State Power Generation Company (MAHAGENCO) has invited expression of interest (EoI) from developers, landowners, and bidders for the development of up to 50 MW of solar power projects that will cater to the state’s agricultural (AG) feeder load.
The projects will be developed on a pilot basis at a single location or at multiple locations in Vidarbha, Marathwada, and the western and northern regions of Maharashtra. The bid submission deadline is December 30, 2017.
The power generated will address farmers’ daytime needs. The EoI is open to bidders, developers, and landowners who either possess land or can arrange for land within 2 kilometers of 33/11 KV or 132/33 KV substations that connect to the AG feeders.
Submissions must include a pre-feasibility report. The scope of work includes project design, engineering, manufacture, supply, erection, testing, and commissioning. Successful bidders will be responsible for performing a topographical survey, a geological soil test, constructing approach and periphery roads to their sites, fencing their land plots, and digging borewells.
The Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) will provide power evacuation arrangements along with the required transmission line from the solar power projects to the nearest substation.
The EoI invitation is the latest demonstration of MAHAGENCO’s ongoing efforts to create solar power projects for AG feeders in Maharashtra. Over the years, MAHAGENCO has been grappling with huge losses when it comes to supplying electricity to farmers. In the past, cost issues prompted MAHAGENCO to shut down four of its thermal power projects in Maharashtra due to poor offtake by the state power distribution company and the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company (MSEDCL).
In August 2017, the Rural Electrification Corporation (REC), a public-sector unit of the Government of India involved in financing all segments of power sector, provided a ₹130 billion (~$2 billion) loan to MAHAGENCO to develop renewable energy projects in Maharashtra. This has enabled MAHAGENCO to pursue its goal of solarizing AG feeders in Maharashtra.
Mercom previously reported that MAHAGENCO intended to solarize Maharashtra’s agricultural feeders by constructing 1,500 MW of solar project capacity, with capacity at each individual project expected to range from a minimum of 2 MW to a maximum of 50 MW.
Image credit: Volks Energie
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.