The Commission had earlier asked NMRC to adhere to the safety norms during the installation and operation of the projects.
Earlier, NMRC had filed a petition asking the Commission to relax the 1 MW ceiling and to supply electricity on a net metering basis. The petitioner had stated that it wanted to install 10 MW of rooftop solar projects at 21 metro stations, depots, and parking areas on the Noida-Greater Noida Metro Corridor. NMRC had also stated that it has a contracted load of 6 MW capacity at sector 148 and another 6 MW of contracted load at sector 83 of Noida.
In September 2018, UPPCL had said that NMRC had been selling the electricity to commercial outlets and charging commercial tariff from such outlets. UPPCL had said that this was a violation of the agreement, and it was not sure how NMRC would use the energy generated from the rooftop solar project for traction purposes and how much would be sold to the commercial outlets.
The Commission had directed NMRC to amend its petition and come out with the exact figures that would indicate how much energy would be sold to the commercial outlets and the amount that would be allocated for traction.
Later, NMRC filed the petition to relax the 1 MW limit for setting up rooftop solar PV (RSPV) systems. It also wanted the permission to set up rooftop solar power projects of 5 MW each at both the places under the RESCO model.
NMRC had further stated that the power generated from the rooftop solar projects would be injected at 415 V to the main distribution board of auxiliary substation at stations and depots. The power generated would be primarily used for lighting and other requirements of the station. Depot buildings and any excess energy generated would be consumed by the traction load. After this, if there were still any excess power left, it would be sent to the grid to be accounted for under net metering. NMRC also noted that it was not selling electricity to any commercial outlet, and there was no violation of the agreement.
In its order dated August 01, 2019, the Commission had spelled the applicability of the rooftop solar Regulations. The Commission had stated:
“After considering the submission made by the Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency (UPNEDA) and UPPCL, the Commission has decided those consumers who had applied to DSICOMs for availing the net metering before the notification of the RSPV regulations, 2019, or placed order for the development of rooftop projects under the CAPEX model and have made the payment prior to the notification of RSPV regulations or signed the PPA with developers under the RESCO model prior to the RSPV Regulations will be covered under the RSPV Regulations and will be eligible for net metering.”
The topic once again came up for hearing on January 09, 2020, and UPPCL maintained that the guidelines laid down by the RSPV Regulations, 2015, were met by NMRC. However, UPPCL noted that as NMRC is an HV-3 (high voltage) category consumer and is a cross-subsidizing consumer, the decision to go ahead with the net metering facility would result in loss of revenue and an increase in tariffs for the cross-subsidized category of consumer.
The Commission also observed that apart from commercial concerns, both UPPCL and UPNEDA have given their consent to the granting of the facility of net metering to the petitioner for its 10 MW rooftop solar power project under the RSPV Regulations.
Last year, the state floated a tender for grid-interactive rooftop solar power projects between 1 kW to 25 kW at various locations in the state, which will be eligible for subsidies by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. The floated tender aimed to install a cumulative capacity of 60 MW.
Then in July 2019, Mercom had reported that UPNEDA announced a tender to install 25 MW of grid-connected rooftop solar PV projects atop government and semi-government buildings in the state under the RESCO model.
Image credit: Fly2Blue [CC0]
Rakesh Ranjan is a staff reporter at Mercom India. Prior to joining Mercom, he worked in many roles as a business correspondent, assistant editor, senior content writer, and sub-editor with bcfocus.com, CIOReview/Silicon India, Verbinden Communication, and Bangalore Bias. Rakesh holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU). More articles from Rakesh Ranjan.