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Costly solar power PPAs will continue to burden Punjab consumers

PATIALA: The state energy sector which has been making a gradual growth against improving its price range might be burdened with the pricey energy from solar plants and the facility acquire agreements signed with the independent solar energy producers (ISPPs) in the state.

A windfall introduced in by means of sale of surplus energy had helped the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) convey down its losses from Rs 2836 crore in 2017 to Rs 908 crore throughout the current fiscal. Besides, the resumption of the Shahpur Kandi Hydel Project and re-operationalisation of Pachhwara coal mine is all set to further enhance the financial well being of the facility corporation. The Shahpur Kandi undertaking would bring in an annual saving of Rs 850 crore for the facility corporation and the Pachhwara coal mine may have an instantaneous annual good thing about Rs 650 crore.

However, the top price to be paid on renewable assets of energy throughout the next fiscal would possibly take away one of the most financial benefits of those tendencies. As the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC) has made it obligatory for the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) to supply 2.70% of general era from solar energy and four.3% for non-solar energy assets, the facility corporation is to buy 927 million gadgets of electricity from solar plants and 1548 million gadgets under energy acquire agreements signed with the IPPs. With the commissioning of extra solar gadgets, the next yr’s acquire of solar energy might be 1663 million gadgets in opposition to goal of 1089 million gadgets. With the price of solar energy being greater than the facility being generated from coal based totally thermals gadgets, this upward thrust in energy from solar plants will put a burden on the PSPCL.

The energy corporation in its tariff petition for 2019-20 has mentioned that the corporation will purchase 1440 million gadgets of solar energy on the reasonable charge of Rs.6.93 according to unit amounting to Rs 968 crore and 1090 million gadgets from biomass gadgets at reasonable charge of Rs five.95 according to unit amounting to Rs 638 crore. The pricey injunction of renewable power will price Rs.1606 crores. In the current financial yr the supply from renewable power assets might be 2211 million gadgets for Rs 1407 crore.

Sources mentioned the facility corporation has already signed PPAs with the solar plants that extend over 25 years under which the price of energy varies between Rs five.97 according to unit to Rs 17.91 according to unit with reasonable price of Rs 6.73 according to unit. They mentioned even price of energy generated from solar plants has come to not up to Rs 3 a unit, Punjab can not renegotiate these energy acquire agreements and scale back the load to the common shoppers.

As of these days, the facility era from solar and biomass plants is extra in Punjab as in comparison to the overall era of electricity from the state owned thermal plants and hydro projects, the balance energy is being equipped by means of the independent energy producers. The solar and biomass plants are supplying greater than 50 lakhs gadgets according to day while the state owned thermal plants at Ropar and Lehra Mohabbat are under close down due to no call for.

The Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA) has commissioned already 27 solar energy plants with capability of 219 MW under phase I and 21 plants of 194 MW capability under phase II. Under Phase III the PEDA had planned 19 extra solar plants of 500 MW capability. Out of those 12 plants of 325 MW capability have already been commissioned and final are under construction.

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