Wind energy tariff bids in India have stabilized, at least for the moment, and once again matched the lowest solar power tariff in the country.
The Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) floated India’s largest wind energy tender in December 2017 and announced the results of the competitive auction earlier this month. Against the offered capacity of 2 gigawatts, prospective developers placed bids to set up 2.75 gigawatts of capacity.
All successful bidders placed bids of Rs 2.44/kWh or Rs 2.45/kWh (3.8¢/kWh), which matches the lowest tariff bid in last solar power auction organized by SECI and close to the lowest-ever solar power bid in India of Rs 2.43/kWh (3.8¢/kWh). The bidders which failed to secure any capacity in the auction placed bids between Rs 2.45/kWh and Rs 2.65/kWh (3.8–4.1¢/kWh).
Successful bidders in the auction include ReNew Power (400 megawatts), Green Infra Wind (300 megawatts), Inox Wind (200 megawatts), Torrent Power (500 megawatts), Adani Green Energy (250 megawatts), Alfanar (300 megawatts), and Engie (50 megawatts).
Adani Green Energy and Inox Wind had been successful in earlier SECI wind energy auctions as well. Inox Wind, a turbine manufacturer, will breathe a sigh of relief with this win as orders from the wind energy sectors have now dried up and are highly regulated and in conjugation with the auctions announced by SECI or state governments.
This auction was the fifth wind energy auction in India, and the third organized by SECI. India opened the competitive auctions market for wind energy exactly one year back when SECI auctioned 1 gigawatt capacity in February 2017.
Since the first auction, the lowest wind energy tariff has declined by a whopping 29.4%. The tariffs have declined so much and so rapidly due to the seismic changes in the government policies. The federal as well as state governments have now moved from a feed-in tariff regime to auctions policy for wind energy projects. Projects can now only be installed through auctions. This has made developers desperate for projects which can be seen in the steep fall in tariff bids.
Thankfully, India has a target to have 60 gigawatts of wind energy capacity installed by March 2022 and has announced a very aggressive auction timeline. SECI plans to auction 10 gigawatts of capacity each in FY2018-19 and FY2019-20. India’s current installed wind energy capacity stands at 32.8 gigawatts as of 31 January 2018. Since February 2017, 4.9 gigawatts of capacity has been auctioned by SECI and two states.