T. Ramakrishnan

Order fixing provisional tariff for power purchase notified

CHENNAI: With the Tamil Nadu Electricity Commission (TNERC) notifying its order of provisional tariff for solar power purchase on Monday, the Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA) will float the tender shortly for executing the Centre’s generation-based incentive scheme.

“We are going to invite bids for setting up solar thermal and solar photovoltaic plants. The government has asked us to go ahead, though a formal order is yet to be issued,” Mohan Verghese Chunkath, Chairman and Managing Director of the TEDA, told The Hindu. The notice for tenders would be issued in a couple of weeks.

In its order, the Commission fixed an interim tariff of Rs.3.15 per unit for power procurement by distribution licensees from solar photovoltaic and thermal power generation plants. It took into account the incentive to be provided by the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy.

Under the scheme, the Ministry will provide generation-based incentive up to Rs.12 a unit for solar photovoltaic power and Rs.10 a unit for solar thermal power fed to the grid. Proposals from each developer with a maximum aggregate capacity of 5 megawatt (MW) will be considered. In all, the government will provide incentive for installation of 50-MW solar power projects. A maximum of 10 MW in a State will be allowed. The deadline is December next year.

Asked how long the tender process would take, Mr. Chunkath said the selection of the promoters would be completed in a few months. They would get a month for submitting tender documents. It was for the promoters to identify and acquire land for projects.

According to secretary R. Balasubramanian, the Commission, in May 2006, fixed tariff for other forms of non-conventional energy sources such as wind energy and biomass, but left out solar energy.

Keeping in view the deadline, the Commission had fixed the provisional tariff of Rs.3.15 per unit, which is higher than that of wind energy (Rs.2.90).

Meeting today

In response to representations from the promoters of renewable energy projects, especially wind energy projects, on many issues including the revision of control period prescribed in the May 2006 tariff order, the Commission will convene a meeting of stakeholders at the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board’s headquarters here on Wednesday.