Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Solar City project back on track

A Union government project to make Thiruvananthapuram a ‘Solar City’ is showing signs of revival. The project lay dormant for two years, until the last Corporation Council meeting.

The Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy had decided to make Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi ‘Solar Cities’ under the 11th Five Year Plan.

The council meeting adopted a resolution to formulate a Solar City Cell and a Stakeholder Committee, essential prerequisites for the project as underlined in the Ministry guidelines.

The Solar or Green City programme lays emphasis on decentralisation and garnering the support of local self-governments for planning and identifying what systems can be most effectively implemented to reduce electricity consumption. “In the long-term, this is to be an extensive project and the design of the master plan will be taken up initially. ANERT is the State nodal agency and funds for the project will be acquired through it from the Union government,” Works standing committee chairperson V.S. Padmakumar said.

The Ministry guidelines stipulate that an amount of Rs.50 lakh will be provided for each town, including that for the preparation of the master plan.

As per information provided by the Corporation, the Stakeholder Committee will include Corporation officials, including the Health Officer and executive engineers, and representatives of ANERT, Pollution Control Board and Kerala State Electricity Board, among other organisations.

The responsibilities of the respective local civic body include amending building by-laws for making the use of solar water heating systems mandatory in certain categories of buildings, provide rebate in property tax, and organise “rigorous publicity.”

T. Valsaraj, Director of ANERT, said the prime focus of the newly formed committees was to create an information regime, entailing widespread publicity and awareness projects on energy conservation.
He said ANERT would associate with municipalities in every district for setting up solar-powered street lamps. “Tenders have been floated and a technical evaluation is currently under way,” Mr. Valsaraj said.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Belgian firm Enfinity plans 100 MW solar park near Coimbatore

Enfinity Solar Solutions Pvt Ltd, a Belgian company, intends to promote a 100 MW solar park in the Coimbatore district. Enfinity’s Managing Director, Guy Baeyens, told Business Line today that the company has two key elements in place – land and approvals for linking to grid.
Baeyens, who believes that the recently-announced Tamil Nadu Solar Policy will help populate the park with developers, said that having land and approvals in hand was a big time saver for those who would put up projects in the park. Enfinity on its own intends to put up a 15 MW solar plant in the proposed park. (A solar power plant typically costs about Rs 9 crore a MW.)
The required land is registered in the name of a Coimbatore-based business house with whom Enfinity is on the verge of entering into a joint venture. Baeyens did not wish to disclose the name of the partner.
For its own project, Enfinity has both equity and debt financing in place. Debt, on non-recourse basis, is from overseas lenders. Baeyens said that Enfinity could help developers in the park raise debt funds abroad.
Enfinity owns 390 MW of solar capacity in Europe-both utility scale and rooftop plants, not counting plants that it built and sold off. In India, the company has so far built plants of a total capacity of 21 MW, for a number of clients including Welspun.
No to thin films
Enfinity will not use solar panels made with the ‘thin film’ technology. This is because, while it is true that thin film modules generate more electricity in hot climatic conditions such as in India, they suffer from ‘thermal breakage’. The modules break in hot summers.
The module manufacturer may replace the modules, but there will be disruption in generation, Baeyens observed.
He said that thin film modules were yet not proven for their long term performance. In contrast, crystalline silicon has performed well for over 35 years, he said.
Enfinity is also offering its services for putting up rooftop solar plants. Baeyens said that the company had rich experience in building rooftop plants in Europe.
Typically, a grid-connected rooftop plant will switch off when the grid power fails. Therefore, the customer does not get solar power when he needs it the most, i.e., when he does not get grid power. However, Enfinity has a technology that will allow the rooftop plant to continue to generate power even if the grid goes off. This is also without the aid of batteries, Baeyens said.

Friday, October 26, 2012

RPower’s solar unit produces 30 million units

The 40 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) plant of Reliance Power in Rajasthan has generated over 30 million units of solar power in the first six months of the current financial year, company officials said.
Confirming this, a company spokesman said that the project benefited from delayed monsoon this year, and its location advantage in Rajasthan.

The unit is located in Dhursar, Pokaran in Rajasthan and was constructed in record 129 days. Since commissioning, the plant generated 3.0378 crore kW/hr of energy.

Solar modules

According to company officials, the higher generation was on account of the plant using thin film solar modules which are highly suitable for hot areas like Rajasthan.

Apart from this, the location of the plant is in one of the highest sun irradiance areas in India. With the absence of sand dunes in surrounding areas, the loss on account of soiling is lower.

It was set up with an investment of Rs.700 crore.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Tamil Nadu Solar Energy Policy 2012

Government of Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu Solar Energy Policy
1. Preamble
2. Vision of the Government of Tamil Nadu
3. Title and Enforcement
4. Objectives
5. Target for promotion of solar energy in the state
6. Shortages and constraints in fossil fuel
7. Renewable energy installations in Tamil Nadu
8. Experience of Solar Energy in India
8.1  Global Solar Scenario
9. Technology Cost
10. Advantages of Solar Power
11. Solar Technologies
11.1 Solar Photovoltaic
11.2 Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) based Solar Thermal Power Plant
11.2.1 Parabolic Trough Systems
11.2.2 Power Tower Systems
11.2.3 Parabolic Dish Systems
11.2.4 Thermal Storage Systems
12. Development of Solar Power in Tamil Nadu
13. Solar Purchase Obligation (SPO)
14. Mechanism to Generate 3000 MW by 2015
15. Promoting Solar Rooftop Systems
16. Promotion of Solar Water Heating Systems
17. Development of Solar Parks
18. Procurement Policy of Solar Power
19. Single Window Agency (TEDA)
20. Solar Manufacturing Facilities
21. Establishment of Solar Power Plants in Industrial Estates
22. Policy Initiatives
23. Plant and Machinery
24. Formation of Empowered Committee
25. Research & Development and Capacity Building 
Solar Energy policy 2012
Government of Tamil Nadu
Energy Department
2.     Vision of the Government of Tamil Nadu
The Honourable Chief Minister Selvi J Jayalalitha has a vision of developing Tamil Nadu as a world leader in Solar Energy by establishing 3000 MW  by 2015.
Tamil Nadu is committed to leading the country by generating 3000 MW of Solar Power by 2015 through a policy conducive to promoting solar energy in the state. This Government headed by the Hon’ble Chief Minister Selvi J Jayalalitha, intends to make Solar Energy a people’s movement just as it did earlier in the case of Rain Water Harvestig.
3.     Title and Enforcement
This policy will be known as the “Tamil Nadu Solar Energy Policy – 2012”. The Government of Tamil Nadu will undertake a review of this Policy as and when required in view of any technological breakthrough or any changes taking place in the policy at the National level.
4.     Objectives
·         To achieve energy security
·         To reduce carbon emissions
·         To project Tamil Nadu as a Solar Hub
·         To generate 3000 MW of Solar Energy by 2015
·         To achieve grid parity by 2015
·         To encourage indigenous solar manufacturing facilities in the State
·         To promote Research and Development in the solar energy sector and hybrid systems
·         To create skilled man power and employment in a new industry
·         Target for promotion of Solar Energy in the State
·         It is proposed to generate 3000 MW of Solar Energy by 2015
==We are jumping to Point 12, the rest of stuff in the middle is general knowledge stuff, not relevant to the policy==
12. Development of Solar Power in Tamil Nadu
Phase (2013-2015)                Target (MW)
2013                                          1000
2014                                          1000
2015                                          1000
Total (by 2015)                        3000
With average solar incidence of 5.5-6 kWh/m2/day, Tamil Nadu is amongst the states with the highest solar insolation in India. To retain its leadership position, Tamil Nadu will promote setting up solar power projects to the extent of 3000 MW over a period of 3 years, as furnished above.
Tamil Nadu will actively promote the solar energy sector by prescribing a certain percentage of electricity consumption through solar energy as mandatory. This will be progressively increased.
13. Solar Purchase Obligation (SPO)
The State will mandate 6% SPO (starting with 3% till December 2013 and 6% from January 2014) for the following category of consumers:
a.       HT Consumers (HT Tariff I to V)
This category will cover all HT consumers including:
·         Special Economic Zones (SEZs)
·         Industries guaranteed with 24/7 power supply
·         IT Parks, Telecom Towers
·         All Colleges & Residential Schools
·         Buildings with a built up area of 20,000 sq.m or more
b.      LT Commercial (LT Tariff V)
The following categories of consumers will be exempted from SPO:
·         Domestic consumers
·         Huts
·         Cottage and Tiny Industries
·         Powerlooms
·         LT Industrial consumers
·         Agricultural consumers
The SPO will be administered by TANGEDCO.
The above obligated consumers may fulfill their SPO by
·         Generating captive Solar Power in Tamil Nadu equivalent to or more than their SPO
·         Buying equivalent to or more than their SPO from other third party developers of Solar Power projects in Tamil Nadu
·         Buying RECs generated by Solar Power projects in Tamil Nadu equivalent to or more than their SPO
·         Purchasing power from TANGEDCO at Solar Tariff
·         Consumers desirous of availing SPO exemption by captive solar generation shall necessarily install separate meters to measure captive generation
This mechanism will require generation of 1000 MW by 2015
14. Mechanism to generate 3000 MW by 2015
The 3000 MW of Solar Power will be achieved through Utility Scale Projects, Rooftops, and under REC mechanism as follows 
Utility Scale (MW)
Solar Roof Tops (MW)
Total (MW)
a + b +c
 In utility scale out of 1500 MW, 1000 MW will be funded through SPO and balance 500 MW through Generation Based Incentive (GBI) provided by the Government.
15. Promoting Solar Roof Top Systems
The Government of Tamil Nadu will promote Solar Rooftops through the following measures
i. Domestic Rooftop GBI
All domestic consumers will be encouraged to put up roof-top solar installations. A generation based incentive (GBI) of Rs 2 per unit for first two years, Re 1 per unit foe next two years, and Re 0.5 per unit for subsequent 2 years will be provided for all solar or solar-wind hybrid rooftops being installed before 31 March, 2014. A capacity addition of 50 MW is targeted under this scheme.
Consumers desirous of availing GBI shall necessarily install separate meters to measure rooftop generation.
ii. Promoting Rooftops in Government
1.     Solar Home Lighting is being installed in 3 lakh houses under the Chief Minister’s Sola Powered Green House Scheme (CMSPGHS) and will be completed by 2015-16.
2.     Energisation of Street Lights with solar energy. The State will be energizing 1 lakh street lights through solar energy by 2015-2016
3.     All new Government/Local Body buildings shall necessarily install solar rooftops.
4.     Existing Government/Local Body buildings will be provided with solar rooftops in a phased manner
5.     All Street Lights and Water Supply installations in local bodies will be energized through solar power in a phased manner
16. Promotion of Solar Water Heating Systems
i.                    Public Buildings
The Government of Tamil Nadu has issued amendments to the Building Rules through the following Government Orders, making the use of solar water heating systems mandatory for all designated new Houses/buildings/Marriage halls/hotels etc.
·         G.O. Ms. No. 112, Municipal Administration and Water Supply (MA1 Dept. dated 16.8. 2002
·         G.O. Ms. No. 277, Housing and Urban Development (UD 1) Dept. dated 14.11.2002
The State will promote Solar Water Heating systems by suitably amending the relevant Acts of Municipalities/Corporations
ii.                  Industries
Installation of Solar water heating systems will be made mandatory for industries having hot water boiler/steam boiler using fossil fuel
17. Development of Solar Parks
tility scale solar parks may comprise 250 MW in sizes of 1 to 5 MW, 600 MW in sizes of 5 to 10 MW and 650 MW of sizes above 10 MW. Solar Power projects will be developed through competitive/reverse bidding. Solar Parks with a capacity of about 50 MW will be targeted in 24 districts
18. Procurement Policy of Solar Power
18.1 Tariff based competitive bidding
As solar power is expensive compared to conventional/other renewable energy, a cost effective methodology needs to be evolved to promote solar power generation systems.
Tamil Nadu will select developers through Tariff based reverse/competitive bidding. The recent experiences of Germany and Spain also prove that competitive bidding is the best way for adoption by Governments. The Government of India through NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam (NVVN) also follows the competitive bidding process.
Investments through Joint Ventures by State Public Sector Undertakings will also be encouraged at competitive tariffs
18.2 Renewable Energy Certificate and Carbon Credits
Renewable Energy Ceritificate (REC) mechanism promotes trading of solar power to meet solar purchase obligations (SPO). All the obligated entities committed to meeting SPO will necessarily will have to wither produce solar power (captive) or buy solar power from TANGEDCO or purchase solar RE certificates for an equivalent  quantity through the Power Exchange from the Promoters who have tradable RE Certificates.
Under this mechanism Solar power developers are eligible to possess one tradable RE Certificate per every 1000 units of energy (1 MWh) wheeled to the Distribution utility or to any other licensee.
All solar power producers are eligible to avail of the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) benefits to enhance the viability of the projects.
19 Single Window Agency (TEDA)
Various statutory clearances that are essential for the development and commissioning of Solar Energy Projects will be handled by TEDA in co-ordination with the concerned departments/agencies. Guaranteed single window clearance will be provided through TEDA in 30 days so that the plants can be commissioned in less than 12 months
20. Solar Manufacturing Facilities
The Government of Tamil Nadu will promote integrated solar generation and manufacturing parks which will house the entire ecosystem for solar manufacturing including wafer, cell and module making, and Balance of System (BoS) component manufacturing. Local solar manufacturing industry (around 1000 MW/annum) will result in substantial direct and indirect job creation in the supporting sectors. Manufacturing of Solar Thermal components will also be encouraged.
The Government will encourage indigenous manufacturing of solar panels and other related equipment.
20.1 Incentives to Manufacturers
Appropriate tax incentives as per the Tamil Nadu Industrial Policy will be provided to attract investors from India and abroad
Tamil Nadu will actively support the growth of local manufacturing of solar components and ancillaries. A solar manufacturing ecosystem will be created that will include solar research centres, test facilities, resource assessment facilities, educational institutions, training centres, etc. 
20.2 Global industry leaders in solar value chain
Global majors will be invited to invest in the creation of manufacturing facilities in Tamil Nadu, with appropriate incentives as detailed above. Tamil Nadu will position itself as the regional hub for integrated solar manufacturing and technology development.
20.3 Exclusive Solar Manufacturing Parks
Lands will be identified for development of exclusive solar manufacturing parks. The State will promote setting up of solar manufacturing industries in these exclusive solar manufacturing parks to be established in the State.
20.4 Requirements for Poly Silicon Manufacturing
A Poly Silicon capacity of 10,000 MT would be required to yield silicon wafers sufficient to produce 1000 MW.
20.5 Preference in Industrial Parks
Preference will be given for establishing Solar manufacturing industries in the SEZs/Industrial estates / Parks viz., SIPCOT, SIDCO and similar Government organizations
21. Establishment of Solar Power Plants in Industrial Estates
In order to reduce the Transmission & Distribution losses, Aggregate Technical & Commercial (AT&C) losses and other infrastructure expenditure, Solar Power Plants will be set up in all industrial estates subject to availability of land at reasonable cost
22. Policy Initiatives
22.1 Net Metering
Net metering will be allowed (at multiple voltage levels) to promote rooftop penetration
Net metering facility will be extended to Solar power systems installed in commercial establishments and individual homes connected to the electrical grid to feed excess power back to the grid with “power credits” accruing to the Photovoltaic energy producer.
Projects to evacuate power at suitable voltages as suggested below
Solar PV System Size
Grid Connected
<10 kwp="kwp" o:p="o:p">
240 V
10 kWp to < 15 kWp
240 V / 415 V
15 kWp to < 50 kWp
415 V
50     Wp to < 100 kWp
415 V
>100 kWp
11 KV
22.2 Wheeling and Banking Charges
The wheeling and banking charges for wheeling of power generated from the Solar Power Projects, to the desired locations for captive use/third party sale within the State will be as per the orders of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission
22.3 Exemption from Payment of Electricity Tax
Exemption from payment of electricity tax to the extent of 100% on electricity generated from Solar Power projects used for self-consumption/sale to utility will be allowed for 5 years
22.4 Tax Concessions
Tax concessions as per the Tamil Nadu Industrial Policy will be provided
22.5 Exemption from Demand Cut
Exemption from demand cut to the extent of 100% of the installed capacity assigned for captive use purpose will be allowed.
22.6 Facilitation by the Nodal Agency
TEDA shall endeavour to facilitate the development of the projects in the following areas:
·         All statutory clearances from Govt. Departments / Agencies
·         Evacuation approval from State Transmission Utility
·         Connectivity to the substation of State Transmission Utility
·         Common clearances from TNPCB etc., whenever feasible for providing plug and play facility to Solar Developers
23. Plant and Machinery
Only new plant and machinery are encouraged as per international standards. Such machineries/components will be approved either by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India, or by approved test centers in India/International test houses. Only plants/machineries which give Plant Load Factor (PLF) as per the latest standards will be permitted.
24. Formation of Empowered Committee
An Empowered Committee under the Chairmanship of the Honourable Minister of Electricity with the following members will accord project clearances for the establishment of solar power projects to be bid out in the State:
·         Chief Secretary
·         Finance Secretary
·         Energy Secretary
·         CMD/TANGEDCO
·         CMD TEDA – Member Secretary
·         One Technical Officer from TANGEDCO
25. Research and Development and Capacity Building
Research and Development on solar technologies / solar thermal storage systems, testing facilities towards the development of solar technologies will be encouraged. Technology Demonstrations on innovative projects in association with reputed institutions will also be encouraged.
To effectively implement this policy and to achieve the intended objectives, the Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA) will promote capacity building in the area of Solar Energy.