CERC Allows Renewable Generator to Receive RECs Despite Compliance Delays
Commission said condoning delay wouldn’t cause harm to stakeholders
January 4, 2023
The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) allowed a renewable power generator to receive renewable energy certificates (RECs) despite a delay in the compliance procedure undertaken by the firm.
The commission said that the delay was procedural in nature and that condoning it would cause no harm to the stakeholders.
It directed the National Load Despatch Center (NLDC) to issue the RECs after due verification to ensure that the projects met all the eligibility conditions for RECs.
HPCL Biofuels had filed a petition seeking condonation of the delay in complying with the procedure for the issuance of RECs.
HPCL Biofuels, which is a sugar manufacturer, owns two ethanol cogeneration projects at Sugauli and Lauriya in Bihar with a total capacity of 20 MW. It is currently availing 5.3 MW under the REC mechanism under the non-solar category.
The company delayed its application for the issuance of RECs by two days for December 2021 and 32 days for November 2021.
In its submission, HPCL Biofuels said that the merger of various banks led to the generation of a new account number for the Bihar Renewable Energy Development Agency (BREDA), which led to a delay in the payment of portal accreditation annual fees as the agency failed to inform the company about change.
As per the data submitted by the state load despatch center (SLDC), the RECs to be issued for the month of November 2021 and December 2021 for the HBL Lauriya unit came to 3,237 and 2,839 for the HBL Sugauli unit.
As per the electricity injection report (EIR) generated by NLDC, the number of RECs for the HBL Lauriya unit was 5,227 and 2,840 for the HBL Sugauli unit.
The verification of the documents by NLDC was delayed as the online EIR sent to the power generator by the Tata Power Trading Company (TPTCL) had some variations in the opening and closing REC balance affecting the final RECs to be issued.
HPCL Biofuels informed TPTCL about the variation and sought rectification before the final documents could be sent to NLDC.
Later, TPTCL informed that the variation in the online EIR was observed due to an error in NLDC’s portal and the rectification had been done at NLDC’s end.
Subsequently, the renewable power generator received a letter from NLDC on July 11, 2022, wherein, NLDC stated that it couldn’t accept the application for issuing RECs due to a delay in the receipt which was beyond the timeline of six months as per the REC Regulations.
As per the REC Regulations, 2022 the process should have been initiated within six months, but due to the delay in the presentation of the applications beyond the prescribed time, NLDC refused to issue RECs.
CERC noted that as per the REC Regulations, 2010, and the REC issuance procedures, the eligible entity had to submit an application for the issuance of RECs as per the details given in the EIR and had to also submit the same information with NLDC within six months.
The Commission noted that the delay was caused for two reasons. Firstly, the merger of various banks lead to the generation of the new account number of BREDA, which led to a delay in portal accreditation annual fees, and secondly, there were certain variations in REC opening and closing balance and RECs issued on the NLDC’s portal, which was generated by TPTCL.
Earlier, CERC had directed NLDC to issue RECs due to a renewable generator. The certificates were not issued because of procedural delays on the part of the Uttar Pradesh State Load Despatch Center.
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