CERC Adopts SECI's Agreed Tariff For 1200 MW Wind
The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) on Thursday adopted the individual tariffs as decided by the Solar Energy Corporation of India Ltd (SECI) for its 1200 Megawatt (MW) of Wind-Solar Hybrid Power Projects (Tranche-IV). These projects will be connected to the Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS).
SECI issued the Request for Selection (RfS) for these projects on April 15, 2021. It conducted the e-reverse auction of the qualified bidders on August 23, 2021, and awarded the works on November 8, 2021, to NTPC Limited (450MW), NLC India Limited (150MW), Project Ten Renewable Power Private Limited (450MW) and Azure Power India Pvt Ltd (150MW).
SECI also has entered into Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) with successful bidders. It also signed Power Supply Agreements (PSAs) with the Haryana Power Purchase Centre (HPCC) and the Chhattisgarh State Power Distribution Company Limited (CSPDCL). Except for Azure Power India Pvt Ltd, which has an applicable tariff of Rs 2.35 per power unit, all others have a fixed tariff of Rs 2.34 per unit.
As per Section 63 of the Electricity Act, 2003, the appropriate commissions are entitled to adopt the agreed tariff of projects undertaken through a bidding process by scrutinizing the whole process to ensure transparency in awarding contracts for such projects.
However, the CERC also pointed out that in the process from the issue of the awards to signing contracts, there was an ex-post facto modified change of a provision which was done in consultation with the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) but without keeping the CERC in the loop or declaring it earlier through adequate documents. It was related to providing a predetermined quantum of compensation for a change in law for the bid. The central regulatory body called it a ‘lapse’ and asked SECI to be careful about such lapses.
SECI for the works had received 19 bids with a cumulative capacity of 6,280 MW, and all of them were found to meet the technical criteria. The MNRE had already issued Hybrid ENergy guidelines on October 14, 2020. As per the Hybrid Guidelines, SECI, in its capacity of intermediary procurer, invited the proposal for setting-up up ISTS Wind-Solar Power Projects on an India basis, on a "Build, Own and Operate" basis for an aggregate capacity of 1200 MW and procurement of Wind-Solar Hybrid power from the Projects being set-up in relation thereto.
The order can be accessed here.