Maharashtra has achieved 9.7 GW of its 22 GW by 2022 RE target

As of June 2020, Maharashtra has a renewable energy capacity of 9.7 GW, which is 44 percent of the 2022 target of 2022.

Maharashtra (Natural Energy News): The renewable energy capacity in Maharashtra is 75 GW, which is 8.3 percent of the country's total capacity. According to the state's National Electricity Plan 2018, Maharashtra is to achieve a renewable energy target of 22 GW by 2022. And, as of June 2020, the state has an installed renewable energy capacity of 9.7 GW, as per the latest report released. Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).

9.7 GW / 22GW is a number capable of diving opinion, as some (particularly the authors of the report) believe it highlights the need for a strong policy and investment drive to achieve the goal, while Others may see it as a glass-half-full condition. Achieved with just two years left on the target deadline with 44 percent of the goal.

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The report states that to promote the deployment of renewable energy in the state, the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) has set a renewable procurement obligation (RPO) target from time to time. And in the financial year 2018/19, MSEDCL, the state's leading disco, which is the largest in the country with a subscriber base of 27 million, was below its RPO target of 1.5 per cent for solar and non-solar energy respectively. It bridged this gap by purchasing a renewable energy certificate (REC) worth Rs 150 crore.

The report then elaborates on how the state has adopted a multi-pronged strategy to adopt renewable energy. Some of the key strategies discussed were:

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Maharashtra Renewable Energy Policy, 2015

The state announced an integrated renewable energy policy in 2015, with a focus on developing renewable energy capacity in the state. The policy also emphasized the development of hybrid and distributed solar projects. The state has been instrumental in the promotion of renewable energy by providing various incentives such as electricity tariff exemption and capital subsidy for selected technology under this policy.

Solar irrigation pump scheme for agricultural consumers

The state government has targeted to deploy 1 lakh off-grid solar-powered agricultural pumps in phases under the "Mukhyamantri Solar Krishi Pump Yojana" scheme. The government has planned to install the pump within three years starting from 2019:

First Phase - 25,000

Phase II - 50,000

Phase III - 25,000

Through this solar irrigation scheme, the government plans to:

  • Provide electricity during daytime for agricultural pump
  • Freeing the irrigation sector from the burden of electricity subsidy
  • Reduce the cross-subsidy burden on commercial and industrial electricity consumers
  • Replace diesel pump to reduce pollution.

The scheme is financed by increasing the electricity tariff by 10 paise per unit for all MSEDCL consumers.

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Solar rooftop

To facilitate solar rooftop generation, the state developed a net metering framework, with which the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission released its grid-interactive rooftop renewable energy generating system regulations in 2019. These rules allow the grid support charge to be levied on the energy generated under the net. metering mode. The charges are intended to recover the balance, banking, and wheeling costs, avoid the distribution loss after adjusting RPO benefits, and any other benefits to the licensee.

Transmission infrastructure

The state has surplus energy and can establish itself as an export hub through its huge renewable energy potential. To ensure the acquisition of electricity from renewable energy sources, the state has developed one of the strongest intra-state networks, and plans to increase its capacity are in line with the proposed renewable energy targets. The state is adding 3.6 GW of Interstate Transmission System ( ISTS) capacity under the Green Energy Corridor. The state is also planning to add renewable energy projects for inter-state sale of electricity to reduce its overall clearance requirement.

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