CII Goa Presented Recommendations to Government on Boosting Renewable Energy in the State

CII Goa Office Bearers met Ramkrishna Sudin Dhavalikar, Hon’ble Minister, Power, Government of Goa and submitted CII’s recommendations on boosting renewable energy in Goa. The recommendations focused on residential, commercial and industrial and agricultural sector.

Owing to the low tariff rates paid by LTD customers, this segment depends on capital reduction methods to make renewable energy adoption financially viable. CII Goa listed a few ways in which capital costs can be reduced for the residential sector, through capital subsidies where through the Phase 2 Grid connected solar rooftop programme, Electricity Department of Goa (EDG) in conjunction with Goa Energy Development Agency (GEDA) have begun disbursing subsidies to empanelled vendors. However, as per a notification by MNRE it took cognizance of limitations in rolling out subsidies through empanelled vendors namely delayed disbursal of CFA to empanelled vendors and working capital issues arising thereof. Through the simplification procedure stated in the above-mentioned notification, MNRE has setup a national portal through which beneficiaries can directly apply for subsidies by uploading all necessary information. CII Goa welcomed the MNRE initiative stating that it must be implemented by Electricity Department of Goa at the earliest.

As many residential consumers are unable to install renewable energy due to high capital costs and a lack of viable financing options. Current financial options include secured loans with collateral such as property, fixed deposits, gold etc. Unsecured loans are available at higher interest rates based on CIBIL scores and past Income Tax Returns. CII Goa suggested that, If the Government can arrange lower cost financing directly to the customer (G2C) the government will be able to increase the adoption of RE without any impact to the exchequer. EDG can recover the EMI via a provision in the electricity bill on similar lines as meter rent that currently exists to recoup the cost of the energy meter installed by EDG. Default rates will be very low as non-payment can be linked to the continuation of the electricity supply.

Further, many residential consumers living in apartments or in houses that are not suitable for solar installation would like to install solar but do not have the roof space for installation or would like to make a systematic investment in solar. Traditional net metering systems do not offer flexibility to such consumers. However, CII Goa suggests that digital solar can be deployed wherein a residential consumer can invest a small amount say Rs. 50,000 in a digital solar asset offered by an installer. In lieu of this, the consumer receives a share in a solar asset installed on a government building by the said installer. Based on the generation of the plant, the residential consumer can receive a rebate on his/her electricity bill. Here the end user operating in the government building gets access to renewable energy without any upfront cost. The onus of maintenance of the plant lies with the installer as revenue is linked to generation. Thus, the government saves initial capital expenditure and recurring maintenance costs. In this, the installer aggregates multiple such residential consumers and can finance a solar plant using fractional investments. A consumer that was hitherto unviable will be tapped which will give a boost to new business and employment in the state.

In the case of the commercial and industrial sector, the lack of viable space and uncertain demand due to the covid pandemic, high inflation and threat of stagflation have caused businesses to shy away from investments in renewable energy. CII Goa suggested ways to boost the adoption of renewable energy amongst Goa’s major energy consumers.

Recently despite the clarion call to industry to enlist industrial premises for installation of rooftop and ground mounted solar power plants using RESCO companies, the initiative did not receive the response as expected, the industry citing that since roof top and open spaces are limited resources, industries would like to be in control of the technology deployed and vendor who will be installing the solar plant, further companies are apprehensive about technology obsolescence and as a result, are hesitant to enter into long term of 25yrs  PPA’s with RESCO’s. CII Goa suggested the government let market forces operate freely so that industries have the choice of OPEX or CAPEX business models as they deem fit. Industries should also have a free choice in the selection of the installation partner and restriction of options will not go well with industries and local solar installation companies. If the government desires, they can buy the green power generated from the rooftops through a gross metering scheme OR provide a rebate of a certain amount like 1.5Rs/KWh in the energy bills and buy the green component of power (REC) to manage its RPO obligations.

CII Goa also suggested businesses that maximize their available roof space or offset 100% of their consumption (whichever is lower) using renewable energy should be incentivized with preferential tariff rates of a 10% rebate on the remaining billed units.

CII Goa suggests that, like every state in the country Goa must encourage captive and open access sale of power. A clear policy should be framed for enabling captive and open access. Since Goa is a small state and land is a challenge, to encourage the developers to come forward the charges for transmission and wheeling may be waived or kept at a minimum for an initial period of 1-2 years. For captive plants where the land belongs to the developer support should be provided in evacuating the power from the generation point. The government may allow solar plants to be set up on wastelands or communidade which are uncultivable by giving them a 25-year lease. CII Goa was willing to share details on best practices followed by other states if required.

CII Goa also suggested that the Government of Goa should initiate yearly sustainability awards recognizing the industry/business that has installed the highest renewable energy plant at their premises thereby contributing to the state’s Renewable Energy Obligation. Such events will serve two-fold, wherein as a signal to consumers as to which brand is operating in a sustainable manner and as a wake-up call to laggards within the industry to adopt renewable energy.

CII Goa stated that it is ready to partner with the Government of Goa to setup the Sustainability Awards on similar lines as CII-ITC Sustainability Awards by taking inputs for CII Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development (CESD)

As regards, the Agricultural Sector, CII Goa suggested that support should be provided to farmers in terms of subsidies for setting up solar pumps for farming. This is a very natural system as irrigation is needed during sunny times and not during night and monsoons. Hence solar pumps are the best and most cost-effective system. This will reduce the load on the Electricity Department of Goa in terms of having to give free power or low-cost power to this sector. There is a need for creating awareness on the availability of the scheme and also ease of availing the subsidy.


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