The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has issued a request for proposal (RfP) for developing a long-term vision, implementation plan, road map, and institutional framework for its One Sun One World One Grid (OSOWOG) program.
The deadline for the submission of proposals is July 6, 2020.
Background of the Project
Back in 2018, speaking on the inauguration of the second edition of Global RE-Invest, PM Modi had underpinned the importance of solar by his slogan, ‘One World, One Sun, One Grid,’ through which the PM implied the coming together of the entire globe to harness solar power 24*7, thus not limiting the duration of exploitation of solar power to daytime.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently called for connecting solar energy supply across borders and coined the phrase, ‘The Sun Never Sets.’
With India at the center, the solar spectrum is divided into two broad zones, namely, far east, which would include countries like Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, Lao, and Cambodia. The far west would cover the Middle East and the African region.
Through this initiative, India plans to build a global ecosystem of interconnected renewable energy resources that can be seamlessly shared for mutual benefits and global sustainability.
The World Bank has provided $625 million (~₹47.13 billion) concessional loan to the State Bank of India (SBI) to debt finance grid-connected rooftop solar PV projects. The technical assistance program is governed by a steering committee comprising MNRE, SBI, and the World Bank.
A screening committee will be constituted by MNRE to evaluate the project proposals and recommend awards to the steering committee for its final approval.
The initiative has been planned across three phases.
Phase I (interconnection of Middle East, South Asia, South East Asia): The Indian grid will be interconnected with the Middle East, South Asia, and Southeast Asia to share solar and other renewable resources for meeting electricity needs, including the peak demand.
For this, an assessment of the renewable energy potential of all countries in these regions will be made, and a study will be carried out to find a suitable way as to how these countries can share their renewable energy resources to meet their electricity demand and to rationalize their tariffs.
Phase II (interconnection of solar and other renewable-rich regions): Here, the grids under phase I grid will be interconnected with the African power pools to share solar and other renewables from the resource-rich countries.
Phase III (global interconnection): To achieve the One Sun One World One Grid vision.
An interconnected grid would help all the participating entities in attracting investments in renewable energy sources as well as utilizing skills, technology, and finances. Further, the proposed integration would lead to reduced project costs, higher efficiencies, and increased asset utilization for all the participating entities.
Scope of Work
Now, the engagement objectives and proposed scope of work can be broadly summarized as:
- Developing a long-term vision for OSOWOG
- Developing an action plan and a roadmap to achieve the vision
- An institutional framework to implement OSOWOG
The scope of work will be undertaken in a phased approach consisting of three phases of assessment (six months), design and pilot (four months), followed by a full-scale roll-out (three months).
The assessment stage will comprise of a desktop-based comprehensive assessment of the existing and future scenarios in the power sector of individual countries in these regions. This stage will include the development of an integrated model that would identify potential demand-supply scenarios in the four regions (South Asia, South East Asia, Middle East, and Africa) assuming an integrated grid-connection.
The work also includes assessing potential renewable surplus deficit for the countries by 2030, analyze power market dynamics, identify policy, and assess readiness for cross-border power transfer, and build an OSOWOG vision up to 2050.
The work also involves developing consolidated demand-supply curves for enabling a better understanding of the renewable supply requirements for the next decade until 2030, which will ultimately form the basis to establish the vision and the roadmap for OSOWOG.
Phase II includes identification of two-three cross-border projects that can be initiated within one or two years, preferably one with each of the Middle East, South East, and African regions considering India as the grid fulcrum for these identified pilot projects.
Phase III will require support in institutionalizing the vision into full operations.
As far as the qualification criteria are concerned, those interested to participate must be a legal entity registered either in India or any other country under applicable laws.
The interested bidder needs to have a minimum annual average turnover of ₹5 billion (~$66.3 million) from the consulting business in India or any other country. The bidder must have an experience of executing (completed on ongoing) at least one assignment in grid-related studies covering generation, transmission, and integration in India.
Prospective bidders must have experience of executing at least ten assignments relevant to the scope of work of this RfP in countries other than India in the last ten years. Eligible bidders will be required to make presentations before the committee on their technical proposal.
Recently, the Commonwealth of Nations and the International Solar Alliance signed a memorandum of understanding to expand solar power in the Commonwealth member countries. The ISA and Commonwealth have at least twenty-eight common member countries. The ISA is a treaty-based international intergovernmental organization headquartered in India.
Image credit: Renovalia Energy Group
Anjana is a news editor at Mercom India. Before joining Mercom, she held roles of senior editor, district correspondent, and sub-editor for The Times of India, Biospectrum and The Sunday Guardian. Before that, she worked at the Deccan Herald and the Asianlite as chief sub-editor and news editor. She has also contributed to The Quint, Hindustan Times, The New Indian Express, Reader’s Digest (UK edition), IndiaSe (Singapore-based magazine) and Asiaville. Anjana holds a Master’s degree in Geography from North Bengal University, and a diploma in mass communication and journalism from Guru Ghasidas University, Bhopal.