A tender for a PV plus 28MWh battery storage system closed with utility-scale solar power generation company Mahindra Susten bidding Rp2.988 billion ($45.6 million) lodging the lowest bid, less than half that of the highest.
The tender by Indian state-run company mining company NLC (formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation) for the battery backed 20MW AC grid interactive solar PV project attracted 10 bidders, among which were automotive company OEM Hero (Rp5.27 billion) and lead-acid firm Exide Industries (Rp6.44 billion).
NLC’s tender for the Andaman and Nicobar Islands was floated this May, with total project costs including both Energy Performance Certificate and O&M costs for the entire project.
NLC India will assess the viability of the bids before awarding the contract as it looks to meet its target of reaching 3,990MW of solar power generation capacity.
Current energy requirements in Andaman and Nicobar are predominantly met by diesel generation, with the tender seen as both an environmentally friendlier and cheaper option than diesel generation, which sits at Rp20/kWh.
The project will receive a government grant of Rp1 billion, which would lower the effective tariff to Rp8/kWh, but even without the subsidy the cost of power is unlikely to exceed Rp12/kWh.
Other applicants for the tender were TBEA, Marine Electricals, BHEL, Ujaas Energy, Enrich Energy, Adani and Sterling & Wilson.
The move is part of a government initiative to encourage battery-backed solar power in the country, after its renewable energy capacity grew to around 14GW. The India government has set a target of 100GW by 2020. According to the Central Electricity Authority solar in India accounted for 5.5 billion kWh of electricity during Q2 of 2017, an 87% increase over the second quarter of 2016,
The NLC tender follows renewable energy firm Solar Energy Corporation’s decision on September 28 to halt its tender for two 50MW solar and 5MW/2.5MWh BESS backed systems in the Kadapa Solar Park, Andhra Pradesh.
Falling solar tariffs, around Rp4.50 at the time of the tender, but since crashed to Rp2.44/kWh was blamed on the decision.
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