Residential Rooftop Solar Connections Surge in Delhi

Power distribution companies (Discoms) in the national capital saw a rise in the residential rooftop solar power connections, with over half of approx 3,700 net metering connections installed in recent years falling under this category, according to officials.

August 03, 2020. By Manu Tayal

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Power distribution companies (Discoms) in the national capital saw a rise in the residential rooftop solar power connections, with over half of approx 3,700 net metering connections installed in recent years falling under this category, according to officials.

Moreover, the BSES Discoms have so far energised more than 2,700 solar net metering connections in the city, with the highest number of rooftop solar connections in the residential segment i.e. 1,526 followed by educational 581 connections and 473 connections in the commercial segments respectively, an official spokesperson said quoted PTI.

According to the spokesperson, reported PTI that, “an analysis of the data shows that the highest number of rooftop solar net metering connections is in the domestic segment. In fact, rooftop solar connection is a big hit among the central government housing society (CGHS) segment wherein around 90 societies and apartment complexes have opted for it with a sanctioned load of over 5 MWp.”

The Delhi Electricity Regulatory Commission (DERC) had issued regulations on net metering for renewable energy in September 2014. The regulations allow registered customers of Discoms to install renewable energy systems and the Discoms will allow connectivity of these systems to their network through net meters.

As per the private Discom, Tata Power Delhi Distribution Ltd (TPDDL), spokesperson, the surge in domestic sector in this regard has been visible since 2017.

“The surge in domestic count can be observed since 2017, which is credited to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) subsidy scheme in Phase-I under which a customer is entitled to flat 30 per cent subsidy on solar plant cost, he added.

So far, TPDDL installed nearly 1,000 rooftop solar net metering connections, the spokesperson said that, “in 2019-20, a total of 374 rooftop solar net metering customers were added that included 245 in domestic category.”

Moreover, the current cumulative installed capacity is 33.7 MW which is intended to be increased to 40 MW in the next two years, he added.

On the other hand, a BSES spokesperson said the response to rooftop solar net metering has been incredibly encouraging and consumers across categories have warmed up to the concept in a big way.

The BSES Discoms -- BRPL (2,197 connections) and BYPL (541 connections) -- have a total 88 MWp solar load at present. In the current year (FY 2020-21), BSES is likely to energise around 1,000 rooftop solar connections, he said.

The BSES official said that “BSES has energised rooftop net metering connections ranging from a sanctioned load of 1 KW to over 1,600 KW. Consumers have begun to see the benefits of rooftop solar net metering and how it reduces their electricity bills. This is reflected in the varied consumer mix.”

If the annual savings accruing to consumers in different segments are analysed, they are saving more than Rs 62 crore annually, he said.

The the official commented “every KW of rooftop solar generates about 100 to 120 units of electricity every month and the cost of the system can be recovered within 3.5 to 4 years.”

Meanwhile, in solar net metering systems, consumers can sell surplus power post consumption, and get paid by Discoms.

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