SunEdison has made further in-roads into the Indian solar power market by finalising a landmark agreement to to sell 180 MW electricity from solar power plants.
Tata Power Delhi Distribution Limited has signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with SunEdison. As per the agreement, SunEdison will supply 180 MW to the Delhi-based utility from solar power projects located in the state of Madhya Pradesh.
The long-term agreement signed between the two companies is the largest ever signed in India and by SunEdison under the open access regime. The open access regime allows generators to directly sell electricity to end users without necessarily going through the usual regulatory procedures.
The agreement is a massive boost to Tata Power Delhi which, along with other utilities in Delhi, has been struggling to meet its solar energy purchase obligations. Delhi, having no wasteland, is incapable of setting up large-scale solar power projects and, despite several efforts by successive governments, rooftop solar power systems have not found many takers.
The agreement also cements the notion that utilities in India, at least those owned partially by the private sector, are willing to move away from fossil fuel-based power plants and towards renewable energy assets. As per the regulations, Tata Power Delhi would be required to purchase only around 28 million kWh of solar power for the financial year 2015-16. However, through the power purchase agreement, Tata Power Delhi will acquire around 375 million kWh every year for the next 20 years. The solar power project will also offset over 330,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year.