The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has notified new benchmark costs for off-grid solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and decentralized solar PV systems for the financial year (FY) 2021-22.
The new benchmark costs will apply to all the implementing agencies developing projects awarded under the off-grid and decentralized solar PV systems. The benchmark costs are applicable from August 18, 2021.
The benchmark costs are applicable in all cases where the letter of award (LoA) is issued post this order. If multiple LoAs are issued under the same program, the benchmark cost will apply from the first LoA.
The benchmark costs include the total system and installation, commissioning, transportation, insurance, five-year annual maintenance contract, and comprehensive maintenance contract.
The table below shows the benchmark cost per horsepower (HP) for standalone solar pumps in the general category states and northeastern region, hilly states, islands, and union territories (UT). The pump capacity ranges from 1 HP to 10 HP.
The new benchmark cost for solar study lamps is ₹395 (~$5.3)/system in general category states, northeastern and hilly states, islands, and Union Territories (UTs).
The benchmark cost for solar street lights (with lithium batteries) is ₹14,200 (~$191)/system in general category states, northeastern and hilly states, islands, and UTs.
With a battery backup of six hours, the new benchmark cost for standalone solar systems/packs up to 10 kW (general category states) is ₹ 94 (~$1.3)/W. For capacities above 10 kW and up to 25 kW (general category states), the benchmark cost is ₹84 (~$1.1)/W with a six-hour battery backup.
In the northeastern states, hilly states, islands, and UTs, the benchmark cost for projects up to 10 kW with a battery backup of six hours is ₹103 (~$1.4)/W. For capacities above 10 kW and up to 25 kW, the MNRE’s new benchmark cost is ₹92 (~$1.3)/W.
The new benchmark cost for solarization of grid-connected agriculture pumps applies to general category states, northeastern and hilly states, islands, and UTs. The capacities are divided into four sub-groups – 1 kW to 3 kW; 3 kW to 6 kW; 6 kW to 10 kW; and 10 kW to 15 kW.
The MNRE also recently issued benchmark costs for grid-connected rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for the financial year (FY) 2021-22.
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Rahul is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Before entering the world of renewables, Rahul was head of the Gujarat bureau for The Quint. He has also worked for DNA Ahmedabad and Ahmedabad Mirror. Hailing from a banking and finance background, Rahul has also worked for JP Morgan Chase and State Bank of India. More articles from Rahul Nair.