CERC Declines to Review Order on Tariffs on Plea by TPDDL

In a judgement released on July 24, 2021, the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) has rejected the plea of Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited (TPDDL) to review an old order which carried incorrect tariff figure with regards to a power supply agreement signed with Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI). The issue was the inadvertent inclusion of SECI’s trading margin in the tariff that was approved, though that is usually kept as an added cost.

In 2019, TPDDL had filed a petition to the commission for the adoption of tariff for the purchase of 100 MW solar power from SECI, requesting CERC to “adopt the tariff i.e. a fixed levelized tariff i.e. Rs. 2.54/ kWh (including trading margin of Rs. 0.07/kWh) till the cumulative awarded capacity by SECI under the RfS document has been commissioned…” The tariff was discovered through a competitive bidding process conducted by SECI in terms of ‘Guidelines for Tariff based Competitive Bidding Process for procurement of power from Grid Connected Solar PV Projects’ issued by the Ministry of Power back in 2017.

A notice was issued to SECI, which submitted that the Power Supply Agreement (PSA) with TPDDL had been signed on the basis of Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) executed by SECI with solar power developers selected in accordance with a competitive bidding process conducted for an aggregate capacity of 2000 MW. Accordingly, SECI requested the commission to adopt the tariff in a comprehensive manner with regards to all such PPAs and PSAs which had been executed.

The commission proceeded with the adoption of tariff in respect of individual process carried out by SECI in a new order which mentioned the the levelized tariff to be Rs. 2.54/kWh, including the trading margin of Rs.0.07/kWh, as per TPDDL’s original petition which had erroneously included the trading margin in the levelized tariff. Upon realizing its “inadvertent” error, TPDDL filed the present petition, requesting the commission to review its order as the incorrect figure might prevent it from seeking the correct power procurement cost from DERC (Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission), resulting in financial loss.

In its response to the petition, however, the commission found that the incorrect tariff figure had no relevance and that TPDDL’s apprehensions were unfounded. Consequently, CERC decided against reviewing its order. Further, the commission also rejected TPDDL’s plea to issue clarification about the correct tariff figure in lieu of rectifying its original order.

The full order can be accessed here.

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Soumya Duggal

Soumya is a master's degree holder in English, with a passion for writing. It's an interest she has directed towards environmental writing recently, with a special emphasis on the progress being made in renewable energy.