The country’s most industrialized state is discriminating against green energy generation as it prefers to make payments to power plants that burn coal, top renewable energy entrepreneurs said.
“Maharashtra discriminates against renewables. It pays conventional guys better. Right now, it is the first state to be doing that,” said Sumant Sinha, president of the ReNew Power Venture.
Going over the annual statements for 2014 of the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company (MSEDCL), there seems to be clear preference for conventional sources of power with over 90% of the power purchased being from conventional sources of energy including thermal, oil, natural gas and nuclear. While all state distribution companies, or discoms, are facing financial difficulties, some of them seem to be worse off than others.
“All states pay everybody pretty much on time but they just don’t pay enough (and) some of them are delayed. Most states are paying on time. The only exceptions right now are Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. These are the problem childs,” said Sinha.
“Madhya Pradesh solar pays on time, but unfortunately, does not pay wind on time. So it sort of differentiates between the two. Rajasthan is, in general, backed up for everything, Tamil Nadu is backed up and Maharashtra is massively backed up.”
The total liability of the Maharashtra state discom including transmission charges and power purchase till March 31, 2014, is al . 14,000 crore.most ` Ratul Puri, chairman of Hindustan Powerprojects, trying to rationalize the behavior of the discoms, said, “When you speak of the discom, you are looking at a cost. You need to allocate that out.You allocate that to the cheapest form of energy you are getting because you say otherwise the cheap form of energy will go away? Possibly.”