Delhi has reportedly been finding it difficult to meet the power demand in the city. This has been a bone of contention between the Delhi government and the centre as well. While the settlement of the dispute is a distant dream, it is the people who have been suffering. Meanwhile, the citizens still have a hope in sight. Delhi government in 2016 brought a policy related to solar energy which has set a target of generating 2,000MW on solar power by 2025. This essentially means that around 7 percent of the total energy consumption in Delhi can be met with.
Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government in September 2016 had announced the implementation of its solar policy in a bid to make the national capital a solar city. The aim of the policy is to installation 1 GW solar power capacity by the year 2020. The Delhi Solar Policy is now expected to roll out this month. Delhi government has been working towards this for a long time and the results may be an indication of the times to come. Delhi Secretariat is once of a kind in the country which runs on solar energy and has reportedly saved more than Rs 1 crore in a year.
The Delhi Solar policy contains within itself, a combination of regulations, incentives, mandates, and tax breaks regarding the growth of rooftop solar power in Delhi. In the policy that was outlaid, there is a promotion of net-metering for all solar plants above 1 kW based on the net-metering regulations already issued by the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission. The policy also has mandates regarding the deployment of solar plants on all government-owned rooftops in the next 5 years. It also says that the Discoms should meet 75 percent minimum, of their solar renewable purchase obligation (RPO) in Delhi. Kejriwal had said that it is his government’s one of the most progressive ideas.
Rooftop solar power systems offer us several environmental gains, provide us with sustainable energy with a low gestation period and minimum transmission and distribution losses. Solar Power can potentially lower the government’s expenditure on energy through peak shaving, strengthening the energy security, as well as minimising the use of unsustainable fossil fuels. It even reduces the maintenance expenditure by lessening the burden on the existing transmission & distribution system.
Key highlights of Solar Policy
1. Mandatory deployment of solar on Govt./Public institution
2. Generation Based Incentive for 3 years
3. Tax breaks, benefits and subsidies
4. Building bylaws amendment for rooftop solar installations
5. Solar system up to 200 KWp is exempted from certification by the Electrical inspector.
6. Concept of Virtual Net Metering.
7. Group Net Metering
The policy promotes net metering for all solar plants above 1 kW based on the net metering regulations already issued by the Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission.
Here are the ways in which the Delhi government and you, together can set up solar power systems on your rooftop and help the world combat climate change, air pollution as well has to improve energy security.:
Group Net Metering
To encourage solar plants on rooftops of buildings that cannot consume all of the energy generated locally, DISCOMS shall facilitate Group Net Metering, whereby surplus energy exported to the grid from a solar plant at the location of the solar plant can be adjusted in any other (one or more) electricity service connection(s) of the consumer within the NCT of Delhi, provided these connections are in the same DISCOM territory. The purpose of this provision is to help maximise the utilisation of rooftop space for solar energy generation for consumers with multiple buildings and service connections.
Virtual Net Metering
To give access to the Solar Net Metering facility for consumers who do not have a suitable roof for installing a solar system (e.g. residential consumers who live in apartments, consumers with shaded rooftops) there will be the facility of Virtual Net Metering. In Virtual Net Metering, consumers can be beneficial owners of a part of a collectively owned solar system. All energy produced by a collectively owned solar system will be fed into the grid through an energy meter and the exported energy as recorded by that meter will be pro-rata credited in the electricity bill of each participating consumer on the basis of beneficial ownership.