HAL to Develop 4 MW Grid-Connected Rooftop Solar PV Project in Lucknow

Developer receives approval to move forward despite state net-metering regulations that limit the capacity of grid-connected rooftop solar PV projects at 1 MW

January 31, 2018


The Uttar Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (UPERC) has given its go-ahead to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to begin the development of a 4 MW of grid-connected rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) project in the city of Lucknow.

The project will be developed at HAL’s Lucknow premises under the Renewable Energy Service Company (RESCO) mode on a net-metering basis.

According to net-metering regulations in Uttar Pradesh, the project capacity for a grid-connected rooftop solar PV project in the state cannot exceed 1 MW. To ensure smooth development of the 4 MW solar project, HAL had petitioned UPERC to provide guidance in the matter.

The petition filed by HAL Lucknow is similar to another recent petition filed by HAL’s Kanpur wing. In the earlier case too, permission was granted for the development of a rooftop solar project with a capacity greater than 1 MW.

In its order, the UPERC stated, “Keeping in view the objectives of the state government and to encourage rooftop solar installations, the UPERC approves proposal of HAL Lucknow to develop 4 MW of rooftop solar by relaxing the provision restricting maximum project capacity at 1 MW.”

It is unclear if UPERC will issue similar orders for approving private projects over 1 MW in the state.

In India, the increase in rooftop solar installations is being largely riven by a growing number of commercial, industrial, and government facilities that are using rooftop solar as a way to reduce their electricity bills. Rooftop solar has not yet found widespread acceptability amongst the masses.

Previously, Mercom  reported that even though there are government programs and subsidies designed to help residential consumers take advantage of rooftop solar, only a few customers can afford its up-front cost, even after the subsidies.

India’s rooftop solar sector has witnessed steady growth since the last year alongside the rise in grid-connected utility-scale solar. Rooftop solar now accounts for ~1.6 GW of the 20 GW of solar capacity installed across India so far.