Govt Issues Implementation Guidelines of Feeder Level Solarisation under PM-KUSUM Scheme

After consultation with state governments, the Ministry of New and Renewable (MNRE) has issued guidelines for implementation of Feeder Level Solarisation under Component-C of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evem Utthan Mahabhiyan (PM KUSUM) Scheme.

December 07, 2020. By Manu Tayal

The Scheme consists of three components i.e A, B and C. The Component-A includes installation of Decentralized Ground Mounted Grid Connected Renewable Power Plants, Component-B includes installation of standalone Solar Powered Agriculture Pumps and Component-C includes Solarisation of Grid-connected Agriculture Pumps.

As per the provisions of the Scheme, grid-connected agriculture pumps can be solarised with central and state subsidy of 30 per cent each and farmer’s contribution of 40 per cent. The solar capacity allowed is upto 2 times of the pump capacity in kW and surplus power will be purchased by power distribution companies (DISCOM).

Since this component was to be implemented on pilot mode, flexibility was given to states for using different models like net-metering, replacing pump with BLDC pump or any other innovative model as deemed fit by the states.

Based on discussions held with states it has been decided to also include feeder level solarisation under Component-C of PM-KUSUM Scheme. Accordingly, these guidelines are being issued to provide broad implementation framework for feeder level solarisation.

 

Implementation Methodology:

DISCOM/Power Department will be the implementing agency for feeder level solarisation in their respective areas. However, state Government may appoint any other expert agency to help DISCOM for tendering and other related activities of installation of solar power plant for feeder level solarisation.

Where agriculture feeders have already been separated the feeders may be solarised under the scheme. This will lead to lower cost both in terms of lower capital cost and cost of power.  Feeders having major load for agriculture may also be considered for solarisation under the Scheme. The requirement of total annual power for an agriculture feeder will be assessed and a solar power plant of capacity that can cater to the requirement of annual power for that agriculture feeder can be installed either through CAPEX mode or RESCO mode, which will supply solar power to that feeder.

Feeder level solarisation with enhanced capacity of solar plant:

The state may choose to install feeder level solar power plant of capacity higher than capacity required for supplying power to agriculture feeder. The additional solar power generated may be used for supplying nearby rural/urban loads during day time or alternatively stored/banked for supplying power during evening hours for lighting/induction cooking and other household purposes. However, in this case CFA will be limited for solar capacity required for supplying power to the agriculture feeder.

Water saving and enhancing farmers’ income:

In case of feeder level solarisation, farmers will get daytime reliable solar power for irrigation, but there is no provision of selling surplus solar power. Therefore, farmers can be incentivised for saving water and enhancing their income. The DISCOMs shall assess the average power requirement by farmers of an area depending upon various factors. This power requirement will be treated as their benchmark consumption. The DISCOMs shall incentivise farmers for consuming power less than benchmark consumption. Such saving of power shall be treated as surplus power injected by farmers and they will be paid by DISCOMs against this saved power at pre-determined tariff. This will be an important measure for conserving groundwater level.

Allocation of capacity and Service Charges:

Under the Scheme solarisation of total 4 lakh grid connected pumps are targeted for sanction by 2020-21 and 50% of these are to be solarised through feeder level solarisation and balance 50% through individual pump solarisation. The Scheme being demand driven the capacity will be allocated to states depending upon demand raised by them. MNRE will request states to send their demand within given timeframe. The states may send their demand for individual pump solarisation or feeder level solarisation or both.

System Specifications and Quality Control:

All components used for installation of solar power plants shall confirm to applicable BIS/MNRE specifications and follow quality control guidelines issued by MNRE. It will be mandatory to use indigenously manufactured solar panels with indigenous solar cells and modules.

Thorough maintenance of selected agriculture feeders is required to maintain feeder availability during sunshine hours. This includes maintenance of DSS, sub-transmission/LT lines and distribution transformers, etc., on regular basis in a time bound manner.

To get more information click on the PDF.

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