GIB Row: CERC Grants Compensation To PFC In Case Involving Adani Green

GIB Row: CERC Grants Compensation To PFC In Case Involving Adani Green GIB Row: CERC Grants Compensation To PFC In Case Involving Adani Green

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) in its latest judgement allowed compensation to Fatehgarh Bhadla Transmission Limited (FBTL) due its increased project cost due to the Great Indian Bustard (GIB) row. FBTL is a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) of the PFC Consulting Limited. It was created to develop a transmission system for ultra mega solar at Fatehgarh in the Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan. 

The transmission system was planned to evacuate the power from the solar park of Adani Renewable Energy Park Rajasthan Ltd. (AREPRL), located in Fatehgarh, Jaisalmer (Dist), Rajasthan. FBTL in its petition before the central electricity regulatory said that due to the objection of the forest department its transmission line length was increased to avoid interfering with the GIB region. This, the firm said escalated its project cost. GIB, is an vulnerable bird species which were said to have been affected due to overhead transmission lines in their region. The Supreme Court later also issued some orders to the renewable players in Rajasthan and Gujarat to take steps to ensure their safety. 

The PFC Consulting arm told the CERC that after during the process of developing their transmission line in the region, the forest department denied permission for the project in some region due to the GIB habitations. This, the petition said escalated its project cost and also delayed the execution of the project. The company said that the directions from the forest department led to diversion of the route, leading to increase in its total transmission length from 103 kms to 146 kms. This led to an additional 43 kms of transmission lines. 

The CERC in its order admitted the plea of the company to declare such events as ‘change of law’ event and force majeure. The petition said that as per calculations there was an increase of length of the transmission line by 41.75% and demanded a 32.58% increase in transmission charges. 

Based on the analysis of previous cases in this regard and its calculations, CERC however allowed compensation to the PFC Consulting firm upto 24.65%. “Based on the actual cost submitted by the PGCIL in Petition No. 9/TT/2021, the cost of the 765 kV D/C Bhadla (POWERGRID)-Bikaner (POWERGRID) of 169.438 km has been worked out at Rs 558.40 crore. Accordingly, the increase in cost for an additional 43 km of the transmission line is worked out at 24.65 %…” the written order of the CERC read. 

This was not the first case of compensation to any renewable company due to increased project cost due to GIB issue. Recently, the CERC also awarded compensation to Azure Power in a similar case. 

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