Kerala Commission Issues Renewable Energy and Net Metering Regulations

KSERC has issued its ‘Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission (Renewable Energy and Net Metering) Regulations, 2020’.

The Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission (KSERC) has issued the new state regulations for renewable energy and net metering in its ‘Kerala State Electricity Regulatory Commission (Renewable Energy and Net Metering) Regulations, 2020’.

As per the new regulations, the state Discoms have been regulated to provide net metering arrangements to prosumers on non-discriminatory and first come, first serve basis within 10 days from the date of submission of the approval of the renewable project from an electrical inspector. If it is unable to provide a net meter within the stipulated period, then the consumer can purchase the net meter at his own cost. The new regulations added that renewable energy systems installed by a prosumer at his premises should not be less than 1 kW or exceed 1 MW capacity.

If the domestic consumers have a connected load up to 20 kW, they can install a renewable project of up to 20 kW, irrespective of the connected load. The maximum capacity that can be installed by a single-phase consumer will be limited to 5 kW.

The state commission had issued the draft of these regulations in September last year and had invited comments and suggestions from industry stakeholders. The new regulation details that the Discoms will be penalised if they cannot abide by the timelines prescribed by the Commission. In case of failure to meet timelines prescribed under these regulations, a penalty of Rs 1,000/day for each day of delay will be imposed. The penalty accrued during the year will be deducted from the return on equity of the Discoms for that year.

Kerala Net Metering Regulations

Furthermore, the Discoms, captive consumers, and open access consumers in the state will have an obligation to either generate or purchase the amount of renewable energy as a percentage of the total consumption as a part of their renewable purchase obligation (RPO). In the year 2019-20, the RPO for renewables was 8 percent for non-solar and 4 percent for solar (totaling to 12 percent). For the year, 2020-21, non-solar RPO is 9 percent and 5.25 percent for solar, a total of 14.25 percent. For the following year, 2021-22, the percentage of non-solar has been increased to 10.25 percent, and solar will be at 6.75 percent, making a total of 17 percent.

In case the Discoms fall short of complying with the RPO, they will be allowed to purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs).

In terms of generic tariff for solar power and small hydro projects of 5 MW and below is set as Rs 3.66/kWh and Rs 5.91/kWh respectively without accelerated depreciation. While the generic tariff considered for solar is for 25 years, it is 35 years for small hydro projects. Generic tariff for wind projects of 25 MW and below has been set at Rs 4.10/kWh without accelerated depreciation for 25 years. This tariff is for projects commissioned with the financial year 2019-20.

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Ayush Verma

Ayush Verma

Ayush is a staff writer at saurenergy.com and writes on renewable energy with a special focus on solar and wind. Prior to this, as an engineering graduate trying to find his niche in the energy journalism segment, he worked as a correspondent for iamrenew.com.

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