Revisit forecasting and scheduling regulations for renewable power generation: NSEFI to MERC

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National Solar Energy Federation of India (NSEFI) has requested the Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) to consider changes to the 2018 regulations pertaining to forecasting, scheduling and deviation settlement for solar and wind power generation.

In its letter to the MERC, the solar industry stakeholder group  suggested IPP- or QCA-wise aggregation of generation schedule and considering the same as single schedule for calculation of deviation.  Such aggregation will enhance the effectiveness of settlement mechanism and help remove the bottlenecks in settlement procedures, it said.

The lobby group also asked for removal of the rescheduling charges and dual payment mechanism, terming them as unfair.

“Rescheduling charges actually penalize the generator’s endeavor to revise their schedule for making them as accurate as possible to the actual generation,” it said while highlighting that no other state or Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) has imposed such charges.

As per incumbent MERC Regulations, shortfall in the aggregate amount of deviation charge paid by solar and wind energy generators at the state periphery and the amount receivable from them by the Pool Account shall be paid by the respective QCAs in proportion to their deviation reflected at the state periphery.

“We believe that this amounts to dual penalty as the generators would have already been penalized on account of any commercial settlement as defined under the regulations,” NSEFI said.

IPPs should be allowed to re-appoint QCA with no restrictions of any time period, the NSEFI said, while adding that forecasting and scheduling of renewable based power is in initial stages of implementation in the country and putting any restriction on re-appointment will force the IPPs to work with less accurate agencies and will jeopardise the grid security.

Among other requests, it has asked to communicate metering and telemetry requirements well in advance and grant sufficient time to IPPs for making such upgradation; prepare Standard Operating Procedure to deal with a scenario of communication link failure when there will be no data communication with the generation facilities, but the system would still be available; and a period of 12 months for exercising scheduling and forecasting activities without any commercial liabilities so that the implementation is smooth.

The framework should be tweaked further with a goal to induce revelation of schedule of wind and solar power generation as close as possible to actual generation, the NSEFI highlighted.