The Gujarat government has announced a new solar plus wind hybrid power policy in a bid to promote the simultaneous production of wind and solar power in the state.
Under this policy, various benefits can be achieved by developers for a period of 25 years or through the life of the project, whichever is shorter. The hybrid policy will remain in force for five years.
One of the major highlights of this policy is land optimization. A developer can set up a solar power project on land meant for wind power project and vice versa. Similarly, transmission lines meant for solar can also be used for wind farms.
The Gujarat Energy Developer Agency (GEDA) will be the nodal agency to facilitate and assist developers in the implementation of the policy.
“This is a first of its a kind policy in India. If someone wants to set up a wind and solar hybrid power projects at a new place, the developer can do it. The decision will entirely be of the developer. They can use different metering as the rate for solar power is different from that of wind power”, said Saurabhbhai Patel, Gujarat’s minister for energy.
Other benefits under this policy include exemption of power duty for the electricity produced from wind and solar hybrid power projects. It also has a provision of 50 percent exemption from electricity duty, in the case where the developer sells power to a third party.
These hybrid projects will also benefit from an exemption of cross subsidy and additional surcharge, as well as distribution losses, and 50 percent relief in wheeling charges.
There are two categories for developers to undertake projects under this policy. First, Type-A projects – under which a developer can convert its existing or under construction solar or wind project into a hybrid project. Second, Type-B projects – which include new wind-solar hybrid projects not yet registered with GEDA.
Type-B developers will have to set up a dedicated line for power evacuation up to the receiving end-station of Gujarat Energy Transmission Corporation (GETCO) at its own cost.
New developers of hybrid plants can decide the capacity of their projects per the renewable power purchase agreement (PPA) with the consumer.
According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, Gujarat has ~1.4 GW large-scale solar projects in operation and over 500 MW under development.