Meanwhile In India, Haryana Makes Solar Compulsory For Buildings

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The State of Haryana, India, has marked the start of the New Year with a resolution to go solar. All buildings with a footprint higher than 500 square yards will come under the ambit of the regulations announced by the state government. They shall be required to install enough solar PV to meet at least 5% of their connected load subject to a minimum of 1 kW.U.S. Department of Energy sponsors $1.4 billion rooftop solar power project called Project Amp

To begin with, only buildings falling within municipal limits and urban sectors will have to install solar power plants in line with the state’s policy. Commercial, institutional, and government buildings will be required to meet higher minimum capacities.

Consumers who generate excess electricity will be able to supply the same to the grid and claim a credit on their power bills. Regulations for the Grid Connected Solar Rooftop were introduced in Haryana about two months back. About 250 solar installers have already been empanelled for the installation program.

Haryana has been experiencing a substantial growth in its electricity demand and the state discoms have been finding it difficult to satisfy the demand. Once implemented, the installations can add up to about 200 MW worth of solar capacity.

The state government is planning to provide subsidy of up to 30% of the system’s capital cost, on a first-come-first-served basis. The Haryana Solar Policy makes a mention that funds for providing financial assistance shall be generated by levying a solar cess (or tax) on the consumer electricity bill at a rate of ₹0.02/kWh (0.03¢/kWh). The state government seems quite motivated to meet its target as failure to install the solar panels by September would attract penalties between ₹10,000 and ₹1 million.

Clearing subsidies punctually will be an important factor in the success of the program. This has been a problem earlier with the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. Several PV installers have earlier asked for the subsidy regime to be ended, as they have considered it to be more of a hindrance. Sometime back, MNRE also pulled the plug on subsidy for solar water heaters.

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Anand Upadhyay

is a Fellow with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI, New Delhi). He tweets at @indiasolarpost. Views and opinion if any, are his own.

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