Role of Discoms in promoting solar rooftop systems
The role of Distribution Companies (Discoms) in promoting rooftop solar has been a topic of discussion for a while now. The government and the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) have taken several initiatives to encourage Discoms to promote rooftop solar. The potential benefits of solar rooftop systems are significant, ranging from reduced carbon emissions, energy savings, and energy independence.
Here are some of the steps that Discoms can take to promote rooftop solar:
- Simplification of Process for Inviting Applications Discoms can simplify the application process for rooftop solar installations to make it easier for customers to apply. The process should be made user-friendly and accessible online, and Discoms should work to reduce the processing time for applications.
- Fast Track Approvals for Feasibility, Connectivity, and Installation of Meters Discoms should work to expedite the feasibility, connectivity, and meter installation process for rooftop solar installations. This will help customers get their solar systems up and running faster and reduce delays in the process.
- Not to Treat Rooftop as their Competitor but to Come Forward to Become Facilitators. Discoms should not view rooftop solar installations as competition but as a way to support their customers’ energy needs. By becoming facilitators, Discoms can help customers navigate the solar installation process and ensure a smooth transition to solar energy.
- DISCOMs to Take Lead in Implementation of Rooftop Scheme Discoms should take a proactive role in implementing the rooftop solar scheme. They can set annual targets for themselves and work with MNRE and SECI to ensure that these targets are met.
- DISCOMs to Form a Dedicated Cell / Team for Coordinating with Various Entities Discoms should form a dedicated team to coordinate with different entities involved in the rooftop solar installation process. This team can work to ensure that all stakeholders are on the same page and that the installation process runs smoothly.
- DISCOMs to Earmark at Least 10% of IPDS and Deendayal Uppadhayay Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) Scheme Funds for Rooftop Discoms should allocate funds from the IPDS and DDUGJY schemes to support rooftop solar installations. This will help to incentivize customers to install solar systems and reduce their energy costs.
- Consumers Awareness About Benefits of Installations of Rooftop Systems Discoms should take an active role in promoting the benefits of rooftop solar systems to customers. This can be done through outreach and awareness campaigns and by providing information about the benefits of solar energy.
- Creating a Consumer Helpline for Resolving Customer’s Queries Related to Grid Connectivity Discoms can set up a helpline to help customers with any queries related to grid connectivity for their solar systems. This will ensure that customers can get their questions answered quickly and easily.
- Putting a List of Permissible Meters with Costs and Vendors on Their Website Discoms should provide a list of permissible meters with costs and vendors on their website. This will help customers to choose the right meter for their solar system and ensure that the installation process runs smoothly.
- Putting a List of Distribution Transformer Capacities Along with Permissible Solar PV Capacities on Their Website Discoms should provide a list of distribution transformer capacities along with permissible solar PV capacities on their website. This will help customers to determine the appropriate size for their solar system and ensure that it is compatible with their transformer.
- Updating the Respective Billing Mechanisms Discoms should update their billing mechanisms to account for rooftop solar installations. This will ensure that customers are properly credited for any excess energy they generate and that their bills accurately reflect their energy usage.