Distributors reluctant to buy solar power

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The Centre had set a target of 40,000 MW of solar power to be produced by 2022 using grid-interactive rooftop solar projects but little progress has been achieved on that front, primarily because of the reluctance of distribution companies to procure solar power, said a top government official on Wednesday.

The targets were set in 2010 under the first Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission.

Distributors’ fear

Joint Secretary in the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy Traun Kapoor told media persons on the sidelines of the Inter Solar India conference, that power distributors feel that their market would be lost if industrial units produce their own power using rooftop solar projects. They fear that their top-end customers could produce their own power depriving (power distributors) of the revenues, he said.

He pointed that it makes a lot of sense for industrial and commercial consumers to invest in rooftop solar projects because in some states such as Maharashtra, the distribution company tariff per unit is about ₹12. The rooftop helps the consumers reduce the cost to ₹7.


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