33 MW rooftop tender a first for India

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In a rooftop tender first for India, Madhya Pradesh Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (MPUVNL) has tendered 33 MW of total capacity under the Renewable Energy Services Company (RESCO) model that has specific project sites, a data room, pre-cleared power purchase agreements and subsidies from state as well as central government.

MPUVNL has identified 567 rooftops, to save on installment time, for a project implemented with the World Bank.

The 33 MW capacity has been divided into 27 project groups with bidders able to compete for multiple groups. The successful bidder will be responsible for 25 years of operation and maintenance of the projects, and bidding closes on Thursday.

The data room will provide indicative PV array layouts superimposed on Google images; site-specific information; consumption history; and estimated annual generation based on local climatic data; as well as monthly electricity bills.

The subsidy offered by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy and the Government of Madhya Pradesh is up to 48% of the typical cost of rooftop solar systems. Of this, almost half will be offered to developers by MPUVNL as a mobilisation advance against bank guarantees, to facilitate easy cashflow.

Rooftop solar is yet to take off

In the event of early termination, MPUVNL will provide compensation to RESCO developers.

The projects are grouped based on the profile of the paying entity – central government departments or state government – and the nature of end-use.

In June, MPUVNL re-tendered 22 MW of rooftop PV projects and in November it had tendered 40 MW of grid-connected rooftop solar.

Madhya Pradesh wants 2.2 GW of grid-connected rooftop solar by 2022 and has a 2018-19 target of 330 MW.

India’s solar rooftop installations have been slow, with only 2 GW of capacity installed so far, against the target of 40 GW by 2022.

In the last financial year grid-interactive solar rooftops fared poorly, with only 352.83 MW achieved, against a 1 GW target.

In the first quarter of the current financial year, rooftop installations amounted to only 155.77 MW, against a 1 GW full-year target.