June 14, 2015

Maharashtra Approves New Renewable Energy Policy, Targets 14,400 MW of Clean Energy in Western India

Maharashtra cabinet has approved the composite policy on renewable energy, in which it has set a target of achieving 14,400 MW of installed capacity in a period of five years and attracting an investment of Rs one lakh crore.

“Maharashtra cabinet approved new and renewable energy policy worth Rs 4,156.43 crore. By implementing this policy, the state will get electricity fee of Rs 3,885 crore and thus the actual expenditure is only Rs 271.43 crore,” Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said.

“According to the policy, the state can produce 14,400 MW power through non-conventional resources and will take a step towards becoming self-sustainable,” the chief minister said on Twitter. 

Talking to reporters, Power Minister Chandrashekar Bawankule said the policy aims at achieving the installed capacity of 7,500 MW solar energy, 5,000 MW of wind energy, 1,000 MW of bagasse based co-generation, 400 MW small hydro, 200 MW of industrial waste and 300 MW of agriculture waste-based products. The current installed capacity of renewable energy is 6,700 MW.

 “Currently, the share of renewable energy is around nine per cent and we are targetting 15 per cent,” Mahesh Khullar, Principal Secretary of Energy Department, said. To promote the installation of new renewable projects, focus has been given on easing the business process and reduce the number of clearances.

“The projects will get deemed NA permission, deemed industry status, deemed open access permission. There will be no need for NoC and consent letter from MPCB and method for registration with Maharashtra Energy Development Agency (MEDA) would be simplified,” the minister said.

According to PTI, procurement process under renewable purchase obligation (RPO) would be by way of competitive bidding instead of feed in tariff for solar, wind and industrial waste, the minister said, adding, that consumers will benefit in terms of affordable tariff.

In terms of financial incentives, there will be electricity duty exemption for ten years. Capital subsidy and evacuation charges refund up to one crore each for three sources – small hydro, agriculture waste and industrial waste. Cane purchase tax for bagasse based co-generation projects.

Bawankule said it was a revenue neutral policy and costs on account of tax exemptions are covered by additional electricity duty from the sale of renewable energy and by incentive grant received from the Finance Commission. 

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