Thursday , 15 November 2018

Solar energy policy draft formulated

The draft solar energy policy has been formulated by Goa Energy Development Agency (GEDA) and is waiting for the government approval.

The draft states that Goa is richly endowed with moderate climate and bright sunshine for almost 8-9 months in a year for generating solar power. The state of Goa entirely depends on thermal energy generated in other states. Goa being eco-sensitive, no thermal energy generation is possible in the state. Hence in order to attain self-reliance in power generation and to promote clean source of power, solar policy is being adopted. This would result in reduction of carbon emissions.

The challenge before the state government is not only to meet the ever growing demand for power but also to progressively increase the share of renewable sources in the energy – mix so as to achieve overall energy security and also to meet the renewable purchase obligation as per the target fixed by appropriate authorities from time to time. It can be done by promoting the systematic tapping of the solar energy potential to the maximum. Technological improvements have now made generation of solar energy economically viable and would lead to reduction of expenditure of the state in purchase of conventional power from the grid.

The draft states that producer should identify suitable rooftop or private land for atleast 25 years for their projects within the state of Goa. To generate solar power, conversion of land is not needed. Two percent of the total area can be used for construction, operation and office set up subject to a maximum of 200 sq. mtrs./per facility. No town and country planning permission will be required for setting up of solar farm including construction for operational space. For the rooftop installation of 100kW and above, the building structure needs stability certificate from PWD/chartered engineers. Apart from structural stability certification, nothing else is required.

The draft also states that the subsidy received from the government of India will be credited to the prosumer/developer as per the guidelines of ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE). For small prosumers that is for solar plants of upto 100kW size, the state government shall grant 50 percent of the capital cost or the benchmark cost provided by MNRE whichever is lower, as interest free loan, which will be recovered in instalments after six months onwards, from the time power flows into grid. The recovery will be made from the payment to be made to the generator for every kWh supplied to the grid. The recovery will be at Rs 4 per kWh or JERC feed in tariff rate whichever is lower. The state government shall provide a subsidy of 30 percent of capital cost or the benchmark cost provided by MNRE, whichever is lower, for plants of size upto 100kW for the standalone systems including the cost of battery (off-grid systems) which will be released by way of Rupee 1 for every unit of power generated and will be paid once in six months. A sealed tested energy meter form GED is required to be installed at the generation side to measure the solar power generation. No payment shall be made to such producer under net/gross metering to avoid possibility of double benefit.

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