Daily News Wrap-Up: India Adds 518 MW of Solar Open Access in Q1

Punjab invites bids to procure power from 200 MW of solar projects

June 9, 2023


India added 518 MW of solar open access in the first quarter (Q1) of the calendar year 2023, marking a remarkable increase of more than 68% compared to the 308 MW installed in Q4 2022. However, on a year-over-year basis, the installations declined by 37%. The numbers were revealed in the recently published Q1 2023 Mercom India Solar Open Access Market Report.

Punjab State Power Corporation has invited bids to procure power from 200 MW solar projects with a minimum capacity of 5 MW each, located in Punjab, through e-bidding under the Swiss Challenge method. The last day to submit the bids is June 30, 2023. Bids will be opened on July 4. Bidders must submit a non-refundable processing fee of ₹300,000 (~$3,633) and an earnest money deposit of ₹400,000 (~$4,844)/MW. They should also remit ₹100,000 (~$1,211) as a bidding fee for the Swiss Challenge.

The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy has established a dispute resolution mechanism to handle unforeseen disputes between renewable energy power developers/ Engineering, procurement, and construction contractors, and implementing agencies. The revised mechanism prioritizes transparency, impartiality, and independence by forming a three-member Dispute Resolution Committee comprising individuals with impeccable integrity.

The Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission has released the draft of the Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (Terms and Conditions for Open Access) (Fifth Amendment) Regulations, 2023. These proposed amendments aim to align with Karnataka’s draft Green Energy Open Access Regulations released last August. Stakeholders can submit their comments and suggestions within 30 days.

Solar installations in the United States grew 47% year-over-year to 6.1 GW during the first quarter of 2023, recording the best initial quarter for the country’s solar sector in terms of new installations. According to U.S. Solar Market Insight Q2 2023, released jointly by the Solar Energy Industries Association and Wood Mackenzie, the growth in installations was significantly driven by a higher demand created through the Inflation Reduction Act and increased utility-scale solar installations.

Abu Dhabi-based renewable energy project developer Masdar submitted the lowest bid of $1.62/kWh under the independent power producer model for the sixth phase of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Dubai with a capacity of 1.8 GW. Dubai Electricity and Water Authority received two bids from ACWA Power and Masdar. The project is scheduled to begin operations in stages starting in the fourth quarter of 2024.

To achieve universal access to affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy and achieve climate change goals, there is a need for accelerated deployment of renewable energy in the electricity, heat, and transportation sectors, according to the ‘Tracking Sustainable Development Goal (SDG)7-The Energy Progress Report 2023’ published jointly by the International Energy Agency, the International Renewable Energy Agency, the United Nations Statistics Division, the World Bank, and the World Health Organization.

The AES Corporation acquired ownership of the Bellefield solar-plus-storage project with a capacity of 2 GW in the United States. Located in Kern County, California, the project comprises two phases, each of 500 MW of solar capacity and up to 500 MW of four-hour duration battery energy storage. The first phase of the Bellefield project has secured a 15-year power purchase agreement to deliver hourly, carbon-free energy to an existing AES corporate client. The company plans to contract an additional 1 GW of solar-plus-storage in the project’s second phase by the end of 2023.


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