Initiative aimed at domestic consumers; applicants can buy power sets from approved vendors

The scheme of generation-based incentive (GBI), essentially aimed at covering domestic consumers, will be administered jointly by the Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (Teda) and the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco).

Included in the recently-unveiled Solar Energy Policy, the scheme envisages providing Rs. 2 per unit for the first two years; Re. 1 per unit for the next two years and 50 paise per unit for the subsequent two years.

This will be applicable for all solar or solar-wind hybrid rooftop installations to be set up before March 31, 2014.

The State government’s incentive will be in addition to the subsidy being offered by the Union ministry of new and renewable energy. The incentive scheme will be, as of now, more relevant in the case of off-grid solar photovoltaic (SPV) plants for the benefit of domestic consumers.

If a domestic consumer wants to put up a kilo watt (KW) SPV plant, the cost will be around Rs. 2 lakh. Of this, the Union ministry’s subsidy will be Rs. 81,000. A 100-KW plant, which may be useful to a commercial establishment or an educational institution, costs around Rs. 1.8 crore, of which the Centre’s subsidy will be about Rs. 80 lakh.

Explaining features of the scheme, sources say the eventual consumers do not have to approach the Teda directly. There are about 120 vendors approved by the agency, from whom the SPV sets can be purchased.

The vendors will charge the consumers, excluding the amount of subsidy allowed. They will then apply to the Teda for approvals for the Central subsidy and the State government’s incentive.

As regards the role of Tangedco, assessors will visit the premises of those domestic consumers who have gone in for solar power installations.

There will have to be separate meters to calculate generation of solar power and Tangedco officials will prepare power bills, after adjusting the incentive amount.

With respect to solar power systems installed in individual homes which are connected to the grid, the facility of net metering will be allowed for feeding excess power to the grid with power credits accruing to photovoltaic energy producers.