Coal India tenders 100 MW solar projects in Chattisgarh

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State-owned coal producer Coal India Limited (CIL) has invited bids to set up a 100 MWp (AC) solar project in the State of Chhattisgarh. The plant—to be established in Capex mode—will cater to the green energy requirement of South Eastern Coalfields Limited (SECL), a subsidiary of CIL.

Current annual power consumption of SECL in Chhatishgarh is 850 million units.

The selected developers shall also be responsible for providing comprehensive operation and maintenance of the plant for a period of 25 years.

The tender is part of CIL’s aim to emerge as a net zero energy company by establishing approximately 3 GW of solar power projects.

To develop solar projects, CIL will be riding the core technical expertise of another state-owned producer NLC India Limited, formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation Limited, which recently completed the entire 709 MW solar power projects awarded by state-run utility Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation in the State of Tamil Nadu, and increased its overall solar power generation capacity to 1350 MW.

CIL signed an MoU with NLC India Limited in October last year with the intention of forming a joint venture (JV) company to install 3 GW worth of solar power projects, and 2 GW of thermal power projects.

“Solar power projects will be set up in the identified barren and reclaimed free land of CIL and also across the country where land is available, requiring around 15,000 acres. The estimated cost for CIL’s solar power generation (of 3 GW) is pegged at Rs 12,000 crore”—read a press statement from CIL on MoU signing.

The JV company to come up on equal equity participation of 50:50 has a time line of 15 months for completion of solar power projects and 60-month period for thermal power projects. The projects will be financed through debt equity ratio of 70:30 as per the CERC norms.

“This is a synergistic step, combining the resources of both the companies for a common goal. CIL will be riding the core technical expertise of NLCIL in thermal power generation and Solar PV Power,” stated a CIL official.