The adoption of renewable energy techniques in India is rising rapidly. Accelerating India’s renewable energy program, the Ministry of Power, Government of India has issued the Electricity (Promoting Renewable Energy Through Green Energy Open Access) Rules, 2022 (“GOA Rules”).
The draft rules were issued in August 2021 and have been officially released in June 2022. These rules require the states to amend their respective regulations to be aligned with the GOA Rules.
Here are few points of the Green Energy Open Access And Application Process
- The sanction load/contracted capacity has been substantially reduced from 1 MW to 100 kW, while removing any minimum limit/requirement of sanctioned load for the captive consumers. This rule not only benefits industrial consumers with lesser load capacity such as small scale businesses, MSMEs but also retail consumers such as large households who can now access green energy.
- Preference is given to the green energy open access application over the fossil fuel based applications. Regular prioritisation can be done promoting and incentivising renewable energy generation by power producers.
- A central nodal agency is to be set up. This agency shall be responsible for setting up and operating an integrated single window platform for renewable energy specific open access, accessible to all stakeholders in the power sector, including customers (both sellers and buyers) for automation and streamlining of such open access applications. This platform is intended to be similar to the National Open Access Registry (“NOAR”) portal setup for the Power System Operation Corporation Ltd. (POSOCO).
Applications are to be submitted online in a standard format, post which they will be routed to the concerned nodal agency for grant of green energy open access.It is a first come-first serve basis.
A common calculation methodology has to be adopted for open access charges. While the above rules shall be notified eventually, the GOA Rules itemise all the charges payable by such customers and provide that no other charges except the charges mentioned below shall be applicable on such open access customers.
- Transmission charges;
- Wheeling charges;
- Cross subsidy Surcharge; and
- Standby charges wherever applicable
Consumers are exempted from paying the cross-subsidy surcharge where the power is generated from waste-to-energy plants, power is utilised for green hydrogen and green ammonia production; captive power producers under the Electricity Act.
Banking of Energy
Banking of power shall be permitted to all open access consumers on a monthly basis and the distribution licensee will be obliged to provide such banking facility for a quantum of at least 30 (thirty) percent of the of the total monthly consumption of electricity from such distribution licensee by the consumers. The banking charges applicable for such service, shall be determined by the appropriate SERC.
Renewable Purchase Obligation(RPO)
The Rules introduce uniform RPO for all the obligated entities in area of a distribution licensee while providing a mechanism to meet such obligations in the following ways:
- By way of own renewable energy generation;
- By way of procurement of renewable energy either directly from renewable energy generators (which include captive consumption as mentioned in point d. below and direct third-party sale through open access) or indirectly (through trading licensee or purchasing renewable energy from power markets);
- By way of purchasing renewable energy from distribution licensee;
- By way of captive consumption;
- By way of purchasing RECs; and
- By way of purchasing green hydrogen or green ammonia.
Consumers with lesser sanctioned load can now choose to procure renewable energy but any entity can switch to renewable energy sources for its 100% power consumption. India is all set to meet its ambitious target of 500 GW of non-fossil fuel energy by 2030, the GOA Rules will help the Indian Renewable Sector in more ways than one.