Special Correspondent

State government forwards proposals to create a capacity of 90 MW to IREDA

IREDA says it will release subsidy for capital investment if capacity is limited to 10 MW

HYDERABAD: A piquant situation has arisen over the proposal to encourage solar energy plants as the State government and the Centre have failed to achieve a consensus on the total capacity to be allowed under private developers as an experiment initially.

The State government forwarded applications it received from private developers with a proposal to create a capacity of 90 MW initially under solar energy plants but the IREDA of the Union Energy Ministry said it would release its subsidy towards the capital investment only if the capacity was limited to 10 MW, the quota fixed for the State.

Generation cost

The cost of establishing solar energy plants has become so prohibitive that the power generated by them in the State will be around Rs. 16 per unit. As AP Transco will not be able to buy this costly power to supply the same to consumers at Rs 3 per unit or so, the State government sought the IREDA to bear a subsidy of Rs. 13 per unit on power supplied to consumers from these plants.

The IREDA, in turn, sent a letter to the State government, asking the latter to bear the entire burden of purchasing such costly power itself. As endless correspondence is on between government with IREDA on these issues, Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy was forced to postpone finalisation of solar energy policy on Monday after having lengthy discussions with officials. He also noted that an order issued by the government making installation of photo-voltaic solar energy units on roof-tops of buildings mandatory for clearing building layouts, has been given a go-by all over the State. The government has asked the Singareni Collieries Company Limited to supply an additional quantity of 2.5 million tonnes of coal from its mines up to May to the thermal power stations of the AP Genco in view of the coal shortage caused by lack of supplies from Mahanadi Coalfields. Energy Minister Mohd Ali Shabbir told reporters here on Monday that Mahanadi Coalfields was not able to meet its commitments to the stations in Andhra Pradesh due to various factors, including transport problems. The gap “will now be filled by Singareni” whose officials had already agreed to meet the exigency.