Daily News Wrap-Up: Karnataka Leads Open Access Solar Installations in 2022

SAEL secures ₹7.5 billion loan from ADB for 74.5 MW biomass projects

March 24, 2023


India added an impressive 2.5 GW open access solar capacity in 2022, registering a growth of 92% year-over-year, according to the 2022 Q4 & Annual Mercom India Solar Open Access Market Report. Karnataka emerged as the top state in 2022, with the largest capacity addition under open access solar power installations, followed by Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, and Uttar Pradesh. These states contributed to over three-fourths of the total installations during the year.

India-based solar and agricultural waste-to-energy company SAEL Industries has signed loan agreements with the Asian Development Bank for up to ₹7.5 billion (~$91.16 million) to promote biomass energy generation using agricultural residue. The funding will support the construction of five 14.9 MW biomass power projects in the Bikaner, Churu, Hanumangarh, Jhunjhunu, and Sikar districts of Rajasthan.

Jodhpur Vidyut Vitran Nigam has invited bids to develop 24 solar projects with an aggregate capacity of 60.48 MW under Component-C of the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evem Utthan Mahabhiyan program in various subdivisions of Jaisalmer -Division under Jaisalmer Circle. The estimated project cost is ₹35 million (~$426,000). The last date to submit the bids is April 24, 2023. Bids will be opened on April 26.

IRCON Renewable Power, a company incorporated by the Ministry of Railways,  has invited bids for the supply of monocrystalline Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact bifacial solar modules for 600 MW of solar power projects at Pavagada in Karnataka under the domestic content requirement category. The last date to submit the bids is April 25, 2023. Bids will be opened the following day.

Bharat Heavy Electricals has invited bids for the operation and maintenance of a 100 MW grid-connected solar power project (Phase-II) for the Gujarat State Electricity Corporation at Raghanesda solar park for ten years. The last date to submit the bids is April 1, 2023. Bids will be opened on the same day. The estimated cost of the contract, including GST, is ₹114.94 million (~$1.39 million).

Allocation in the Union Budget 2023 to the Ministry of Power has increased 29% to over ₹160 billion (~$2 billion), the highest ever for the ministry, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Energy noted. The committee felt the increased allocation reflected better budgetary planning by the ministry, which had convinced the finance ministry to allocate higher funds, the standing committee said in its report on Demand for Grants for 2023-24.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has announced an investment of ₹6 billion (~$72.9 million) in a subsidiary of Mahindra & Mahindra to expand the reach of affordable electric three-wheelers and small commercial vehicles. IFC’s initial investment in an electric vehicle manufacturer in India, and the first for electric three-wheelers worldwide, will be via mandatory convertible instruments at a valuation of up to ₹60.2 billion (~$732 million).

Gensol Engineering, a part of solar engineering, procurement, and construction company Gensol Group, has acquired India-based solar tracker manufacturer Scorpius trackers for ₹1.35 billion ($16.4 million). Gensol said the acquisition would enable the company to provide end-to-end engineering and construction solutions to its customers. The solar tracking technology will further help Gensol’s customers reduce their levelized cost of energy.

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has signed a binding agreement with McPhy Energy, a French electrolyzer technology and manufacturing company, for a long-term partnership to explore opportunities in the emerging green hydrogen market. As part of the partnership, McPhy will provide L&T with an exclusive license to use its pressurized alkaline electrolyzer technology for manufacturing electrolyzers, including any future product upgrades.

Solar module maker Canadian Solar’s net income surged 200% year-over-year (YoY) to $78 million for the fourth quarter (Q4) of the financial year 2022, fueled by increased module shipments and reduced expenses. The module manufacturer’s engineering, procurement, and construction subsidiary CSI Solar shipped 6.4 GW of solar modules to 70 countries in Q4, a 68% rise YoY.

The net loss of Array Technologies, a provider of utility-scale solar tracker technology solutions, narrowed to $17.3 million in the fourth quarter (Q4) of the financial year (FY) 2022 compared with $32.1 million year-over-year (YoY). The company said that the decrease in loss was mainly driven by the additional revenue from the company’s acquisition of solar tracker manufacturer Soluciones Tecnicas Integrales Norland. Array’s revenue for Q4 rose 83% YoY to $402.1 million, primarily driven by a higher average selling price of a product called Duratrack.

Spearmint Energy, a green merchant trading company that develops, owns, and operates around battery energy storage systems (BESS), has acquired a portfolio of 900 MW BESS assets, collectively known as Nomadic. The Nomadic BESS portfolio comprises three projects, each with a target capacity of 300 MW. It is located in Cooke, Galveston, and Brazoria counties in Texas and has a capacity of up to 900 MW and 2,000 MWh. The portfolio will serve the Electric Reliability Council of Texas market, where the demand for renewable energy generation has increased after the winter storm Uri and the passing of the Inflation Reduction Act.

BluEarth, an independent renewable power producer, has acquired a group of seven wind and solar projects in the U.S. from the renewable energy developer Ozone Renewables. The projects, with a total capacity of about 1 GW, are located in the states of Ohio, Oklahoma, Washington, and Oregon. The deal marks BluEarth’s second acquisition from Ozone. BluEarth’s growing development pipeline now totals over 7 GW of wind, solar, and storage projects in its expanding development portfolio.

Midsummer, a Swedish developer, in collaboration with researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), has developed a four-terminal perovskite-CIGS tandem solar cell that has demonstrated an efficiency of 24.9%. Through a collaborative project with Yang of UCLA, Midsummer has showcased a four-terminal tandem solar cell that combines perovskite and CIGS technologies.