Karnataka: Install solar unit on your rooftop, earn rent

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BENGALURU: To boost the number of solar rooftop photovoltaic projects in the state, Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) issued an order recognising thirdparty investments in setting up SRTPV units in rooftops of houses. Under this model, a developer/investor can install, own and operate solar plants on the rooftop by paying a monthly rent for the space used.

The energy generated will be sold to the consumer at retail supply tariffs fixed by KERC, before being injected into the grid. According to KERC, only 205 MW capacity of SRTPV units has been installed in Karnataka as of July; the target set by the state in its 2014-21 solar policy was 2,400 MW.

Under the third-party investor/developer model, the consumer buys energy from the developer/investor who installs, owns and operates a rooftop solar plant for a mutually agreed period.

A net metering system will be used in the third-party investment model for low tension (LT) domestic (residential) consumers, through which the surplus energy generated and not consumed will be injected back into the grid.

Domestic consumers will be exempted from paying cross-subsidy surcharge and additional amount on the energy supplied by the third party.

For non-residential LT and high tension (HT) consumers, a gross metering system will be followed.

The gross metering system has drawn a lot of flak from the Karnataka Renewable Energy Systems Manufacturers Association (KRESMA).

Association president Ramesh Shivanna said: “The new order offers less incentives to third-party investors. While a net metering model was followed earlier, now it is gross metering. This will only adversely impact KERC’s efforts to increase the SRTPV footprint.”

Source: Economic Times