Solar Rooftop Scenario – Maharashtra

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Maharashtra State Net metering policy highlights

Eligible Consumer
  • Wants to setup a Solar Plant up to a maximum capacity of 1 MW (subject to Technical Constraints explained ahead)
  • On Rooftop or any other Mounting Structure (Ground, Shed and Superstructures etc) in his premises
  • to meet all or part of electricity requirement including Consumer catering to common load (Housing Society Community Halls, Pumping stations etc)
  • Such System maybe owned by Consumer directly or by 3rd Party leasing such system (opening up the market to investors who will setup the power plant FREE to sell electricity to the consumer at a cost less than what Distribution Companies offer)
Capacity Limitation (Due to transformers)

The cumulative capacity of all solar plants connected to a Distribution Transformer (which is the closest grid transformer from which we receive electricity) should not exceed 40% of its capacity. The Distribution Company may allow for more after conducting a Detailed Load Flow Study,

The Distribution Company shall:
  • Put on its website, the information of available capacity of Distribution Transformers within 3 months (10th Dec, 2015) of the notification (10th Sept, 2015)
  • Update the capacity available quarterly within 1 month of ending of the quarter
First Come & First Serve

Since there are technical limitations set out in the policy for the maximum capacity of Solar plants that can be connected to the distribution transformer of the Electricity Distribution Company, the permission for Net Metering would be given on First Come, First Serve basis with a priority to already installed Solar Plants.

Duration of net metering agreement

After the approval for Net Metering, but before the commissioning of the system, the distribution company and the consumer would enter into a Net Metering Agreement for a duration of 20 years.

RPO & REC

In case the solar generation would be used to meet RPO of the consumer, then the meter for measuring solar generation has to be put at the cost of the consumer, but if the Distribution Company meets its RPO through this solar generation, then the Discom would pay for the meter

No deemed generation

Solar Power Plant (without battery backup) won’t be able to generate electricity without Grid Connection, so the electricity lost during the time that the grid was not available cannot be claimed from the Distribution Company.

Other approval

Other Approvals from Municipality, Chief Electricity Inspector etc have to be taken which are applicable to any solar system irrespective of Net Metering.

Technical Aspects of Maharashtra Net Metering Policy 2015

Sanctioned Load

The capacity of the Solar Plant proposed cannot exceed the Contract Demand or Sanctioned Load of the Consumer. The variation of 5% is allowed, however.

Capacity Limits (due to Voltage)

The following capacity limits have been proposed in the Maharashtra Net Metering Policy, 2015.

HT Consumers

  • The HT Consumers (11 kV and above) would connect the solar plant on their LT bus bar system, but metering would be on HT side of the transformer.

Battery Backup Systems

  • For solar plants with battery backup, the inverter shall have a separate back-up wiring – automatic and manual – to prevent the power from flowing into the grid in absence of grid supply.

 

Commercial Aspects of Maharashtra Net Metering Policy 2015

Application Fees

For consumers with sanctioned load of less than 5 kW, registration fees of Rs. 500 needs to be paid with the application form, which for consumers having sanctioned load of more than 5 kW, fees of Rs 1000 will have to be paid.

Cost of Meters

Net Meter shall be procured and installed by the Distribution Company at its cost. However, the consumer can also opt to procure the meter.

Time of Day Tariff

The surplus electricity fed during peak hour tariffs is not going to be compensated against peak hours. It will be adjusted against non-peak hours.

Carry over

In case the electricity produced by solar plant in any billing cycle is more than the total energy consumed, then the excess of solar energy exported to the grid will be ‘carried over’ to the next billing cycle. However, at the end of every year, the total net exported electricity from solar is going to be compensated at the Average Pooled in Power Cost of the Distribution Company (approximately Rs. 3.4 for Maharashtra) and the credit carried over would be reset to ZERO.

 

Documents with Application

The following documents need to be submitted along with Application for Net Metering:

  • Copy of the latest paid electricity bill
  • General Power of Attorney in favor of signatory in case of Partnership Firms, certified true copy of the Resolution, authorizing the signatory to deal with the concerned Distribution Company, passed by the Board of Directors in case of Companies (as applicable)
  • Technical Details of PV Modules, Inverter and other equipment of system proposed to be installed
  • Proof of Payment of Registration Fees

 

The short report on financial viability analysis report is aimed to provide a glimpse on financial viability in terms of certain expected return on equity,

Grid parity analysis

 

Cost of Solar Rooftop Project assuming INR 55/Wp
Expected Equity IRR: 12%   Expected Equity IRR: 15% Expected Equity IRR: 18%
LCOE (INR/kWh): 5.89 LCOE (INR/kWh): 6.38   LCOE (INR/kWh): 6.83

 

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