Under-Construction Solar Project

The National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) is on the lookout for an off-taker to procure solar power from the 250MW Kadapa solar park in Andhra Pradesh.

The NTPC had tendered 250 MW of solar at Kadapa, which Solairedirect won by quoting Rs.3.15 (~$0.0487)/kWh which was the lowest tariff at that time. Due to surplus power in the state, Andhra Pradesh State Power Distribution Company (APSPDCL) refused to sign power purchase agreement (PPA) with NTPC at Rs.3.15 (~$0.0487)/kWh.

This led to the NTPC asking the New and Renewable Energy Development Agency of Andhra Pradesh (NREDCAP) for intervention.

An NREDCAP official told Mercom, “Andhra Pradesh is power surplus and we do not need to buy power at Rs.3.15/kWh. The NTPC had been made aware of this. Later, the NTPC sought permission to look for another power off-taker from the proposed 250 MW project. The permission has been granted and APSPDCL has also agreed to evacuate power from the project for NTPC free of cost.”

When contacted, an APSPDCL official told Mercom, “We in Andhra provide one of the cheapest rates of power to consumers – why should we buy at higher costs? It doesn’t make sense.”  The NTPC has been given the go ahead to engage with any other off-takers, added the APSPDCL official.

When contacted, an NTPC official told Mercom, “Now states want the cheapest power – they are getting greedy. At that point of time, Rs.3.15/kWh was the cheapest solar tariff, but now Andhra Pradesh utilities do not want to purchase solar power, which has become “expensive” within one quarter.”

The NTPC had brought out this tender solely for NREDCAP and there was no delay on NTPC’s part to sign the PPAs, added the NTPC official.

According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) has cancelled tenders, including 500 MW of solar projects under the Open category and 150 MW of solar under the DCR category, at the Kadapa Solar Park Tranche-IV, which was originally announced on June 20, 2016. It also canceled 100 MW (Open category) of solar with battery energy storage system (BESS) at the Kadapa Solar Park Tranche-V, which was announced on August 9, 2016.

Image Credit: Rays Power Infra