MNRE Drafts Scheme for Round-the-Clock Supply of Renewable Power

MNRE has issued a new draft policy for the supply of round-the-clock power from renewable energy projects, complemented with thermal power projects to Discoms

MNRE Round-the-Clock Renewable

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has issued a new draft policy for the supply of round-the-clock (RTC) power from renewable energy (solar, wind or small hydro) power projects. The power will be complemented with thermal power projects as and when needed.

The ministry has now requested stakeholders like the Ministry of Power, SECI, NTPC, CEA, CERC, PGCIL, POSOCO, RE Associations and state governments and their Discoms to provide comments/ feedback on the subject draft scheme.

The idea behind the implementation of the scheme is to address the biggest issue with large scale uptake of clean energy – intermittency. Solar and wind energy are not available throughout the day severely limiting their use in modern grids. To address the issues of intermittency, limited hours of supply and low capacity utilisation of transmission infrastructure, the ministry has come up with the process of reverse bundling, wherein high-cost thermal power is being allowed to be bundled with cheaper renewable energy.

“The main objective of the scheme is to provide RTC power to the Discoms through the bundling of renewable power with thermal power and to scale up renewable capacity additions. It will also facilitate fulfilment of the renewable purchase obligation (RPO) requirement of the obligated entities,” the ministry has issued.

With the implementation of the scheme the main beneficiaries of the scheme, the Discoms will be able to meet their RPO obligations and the will also be able to purchase firm power at competitive rates to meet their deficits or replace costly power. The distribution companies will not have to undertake operations to integrate renewable power into the grid since the responsibility of giving firm power will be with the Generator and they may further save due to optimum scheduling of power among the sources.

According to the draft, a generator has to supply power such that at least 51 percent of the annual energy supplied corresponds to RE and the balance is drawn from thermal sources. The generator will supply renewable power complemented with thermal power, in RTC manner, keeping at least 80 percent availability on an annual basis.

A composite single tariff for RE, complemented with thermal energy will be quoted by the bidders at the delivery point which shall be at the central transmission utility (CTU) interconnection point. The basis of selection of the successful bidder for renewable and thermal energy will be through a transparent bidding process and the bids will be invited for renewable power combined with one single thermal fuel source — coal. The ministry has proposed that the tariff will be quoted by the bidders as a composite single tariff for bundled energy and will act as a bidding parameter.

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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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