MSEDCL Tenders 1 GW of Solar Projects to be Developed Across Maharashtra

The Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MSEDCL) has tendered 1 GW of solar photovoltaic (PV) projects to be developed under the Mukhyamantri Saur Krushi Vahini Yojana.

The bid-submission deadline is May 22, 2018.

The solar PV projects will be developed across 218 taluks in 20 districts in Maharashtra. MSEDCL will enter into Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the successful bidders for purchase of solar power for a period of 25 years from the commercial operation date of the solar power projects.

The scope of work includes the design, finance, procurement of land, engineering, procurement, construction, operation, and maintenance of the solar PV projects. The projects should be designed for delivery of energy at 11/22 kV level substation of MSEDCL.

The responsibility of getting the grid connectivity with MSEDCL will rest on the bidder. The successful bidder will submit documentary evidence for securing connectivity with grid from MSEDCL within seven months from the date of signing of PPA.

A single bidder must bid for minimum 2 MW and can bid for maximum 10 MW per taluka. The MSEDCL has set ₹3.30 (~$0.0494)/kWh as the upper tariff ceiling for this tender.

During PPA, if for any year, it is found that the developer has not been able to generate minimum energy corresponding to the lower limit of the Capacity Utilization Factor (CUF) declared, the developer will pay the compensation provided in the PPA as payable to MSEDCL. The MSEDCL can write off the penalty in case of grid non-availability for evacuation, which is beyond the control of the developer.

In case the availability is more than the maximum CUF specified, the generator will be free to sell it to any other entity, provided the first right of refusal will lie with the MSEDCL. In case the MSEDCL purchases the excess generation over and above 10 percent of the declared annual CUF, the same may be done at 75 percent of the PPA tariff.

In case of delay in project commissioning up to six months from the scheduled date of completion, MSEDCL will encash Performance Bank Guarantee (PBG) on per day basis and proportionate to the balance capacity not commissioned.

In case the commissioning of the project is delayed beyond six months, the tariff discovered will be reduced at the rate of ₹0.50 (~$0.0074)/kWh per day for the delay in the remaining capacity that hasn’t been commissioned for the entire term of the PPA.

The maximum time-period allowed for commissioning of the full project capacity with encashment of PBG and reduction in the fixed tariff will be 25 months from the date of PPA or till the tariff becomes zero.

The MSEDCL is turning to solar to meet the energy needs of Maharashtra at a cheaper cost as well as to meet the renewable purchase obligation (RPO).

Recently, MSEDCL also retendered 1,000 MW of grid-connected solar projects in order to meet its solar RPO, and invited Expressions of Interest (EoI) from prospective solar project developers to set up a 1 GW floating solar PV project on Ujjani Dam reservoir in Solapur district of Maharashtra.

In March 2018, the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) issued draft regulations for the forecasting, scheduling, and deviation settlement for solar and wind power generation in the state.

This MSEDCL tender is similar to the tender floated by Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL) in December 2017 for the allotment of 860 MW (20 MW x 43 Taluks) grid-connected solar projects in 43 selected taluks in Karnataka.

Image credit: MMEPL Solar

Saumy Prateek 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.