Frontline to set up 100 MW solar plant in Himachal Pradesh

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The state government of Himachal Pradesh has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Delhi-based diversified business group Frontline for setting up a 100 MW solar power plant in the state. This plant would be established at an investment of Rs 700 crore and would provide employment opportunities to over 700 persons.

Principal secretary (power) Prabodh Saxena and Frontline chairman Dr Sanjay Sinha signed the MoU in the presence of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur. Also present on the occasion were additional chief secretary Dr Shrikant Baldi and Frontline MD Pushpesh Singh.

Recently, independent power producer Renew Power had also proposed to invest in up to 200 MW power projects in the state.

The state government of Himachal Pradesh has set the target of attracting investments of Rs 85,000 crore and so far signed MoUs for projects worth Rs 22,000 crore [in various sectors], according to chief minister Jai Ram Thakur.

According to Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, as of June 30, 2019, Himachal Pradesh had total installed grid-interactive solar capacity of 25.43 MW, including 17 MW ground-mounted and 8.43 MW rooftop.

National Institute of Solar Energy—an autonomous R&D institution under MNRE—has estimated the state’s solar potential at 33.84 GWp. Being a hilly state, Himachal Pradesh has generally a clear sky and the average solar radiation level in the entire physiographic zones of the state receives insolation between 4-5.25 kWh/m2/day with around 300 clear sunny days in a year, favouring commercial as well as domestic applications of solar energy.

The Himachal Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission recently announced generic levelised tariffs for PV projects. The rates range from Rs 3.98/kWh for projects in rural and undeveloped areas up to 1 MW in size and Rs 3.94/kWh for installations between 1 MW and 5 MW. Generic tariffs for projects in the state’s industrial and urban areas are set at Rs 4.06/kWh (up to 1 MW) and Rs 4.02/kWh (1 MW to 5 MW).