The Telangana power utilities are gearing up to add 1,000 MW more through solar energy to the grid before the end of the current financial year.
The utilities have already floated tenders for setting up of solar plants and they received enthusiastic response from the bidders in this regard. The Telangana utilities have already added close to 1,000 MW to the grid through renewable sources, predominantly solar, after the announcement of comprehensive solar power policy.
As part of the policy, the utilities have decided not to collect cross subsidy and wheeling charges from the developers besides ensuring reimbursement of VAT. The addition of 1,000 MW more would come as a breather to the State which had initially faced difficulties in the power sector. The State had entered into long term power supply contract with neighbouring Chhattisgarh to overcome the shortages with supply costing over Rs. 4 a unit.
The State presently has generation capacity of over 4,300 MW through thermal (2,282.5 MW) and hydel (2,081 MW) while works are in progress for capacity addition of 960 MW including 600 MW through thermal energy and 360 MW through hydel power. The utilities, according to TS Genco chairman and managing director D. Prabhakar Rao, have decided to utilise the existing infrastructure for evacuation of power generated through the solar plants.
The policy therefore specified that the solar generation units be spread across the State so that the existing infrastructure like the 220 kV sub-stations spread across the state can be utilitised to evacuate the power. In addition, distribution of solar energy plants would ensure that there was no problem relating to land availability . “We have planned for area wise evacuation of power so that prospective entrepreneurs need not look for the sources of evacuation,” he told The Hindu.