As part of cost-saving measure, it has identified captive generators that are causing financial losses
The Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco) has planned to ‘regulate’ banking of wind energy to cut down on losses.
As part of the cost-saving measure, the electricity utility has identified certain captive wind generators that are causing ‘huge’ financial losses and would stop power when there is pressure on electricity grid.
A senior Tangedco official said the concept of ‘banking of wind energy’ had been in prevalence since 1986 to encourage wind generators. But over the years Tangedco has been petitioning the Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) to do away with it, as it has been proving to be a big burden. The wind season being relevant only for six months, under the banking system, wind generators are entitled to draw free power (equal to the quantity of wind energy pumped to the grid) throughout the financial year.
The official said normally the average cost of wind energy pumped to the grid is ₹3 per unit, whereas they draw power ‘free of cost’ during peak period months. He said: “The drawing of power during peak months results in losses to the electricity utility, which has purchased power at an average cost of ₹6.50 per unit.
Petition to TNERC
In the petition filed to the TNERC in December 2016, Tangedco sought changes in the banking period to January-December, instead of April-March and completely stop banking facility to new wind projects from November 1, 2016.
The senior Tangedco official said with the TNERC sitting on the petition they do not have any option except to regulate wind generators identified to be causing losses to the electricity utility. He said at present wind energy capacity in the State was as high as 7,500 mega watt (MW), of which 1,000 MW was under the Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) scheme.