“Among the various renewable sources I consider Solar Energy as the most promising one particularly for a country like India, and especially for Tamil Nadu with abundant solar radiation throughout the year. Tamil Nadu is a pioneer in promoting renewable energy and represents 33% of India’s renewable energy installed capacity. Tamil Nadu accounts for 43% of India’s installed capacity in wind energy.Tamil Nadu has announced the highest tariff of Rs.18.45/unit as against Rs.17.91/unit fixed by the Central Electricity Regulatory commission for solar power under RPSSGP of the mission. Under this scheme Seven SPV projects of each 1 MW capacity have been sanctioned for our state.Tamil Nadu Energy Regulatory Commission has set a RPO target of 14 percent for 2010-11 and is also expected to set apart, a portion of this target for Solar Energy soon. With this subsidy from the Government of India, RPO’s and appropriate tariff policies the time is now ripe for us to take a giant leap in Solar Energy.” said Dr. M.K Stalin, Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, while releasing the solar road map prepared by CII, at the “Tamil Nadu Solar Convention 2010″.
The convention was welcomed by Mr. N.K Ranganath vice chairman CII and Mr. Ramesh Kymal delivered a special address to the convention where he talked about the objectives of the Solar convention and the effort that was carried out by the solar task force.
The plenary session of the convention was on ” Solar Power: Opportunities and Challenges in Today’s Scenario” which was moderated by Mr. G.M Pillai, Director General, World Institute of Sustainable Energy. The panel discussed in detail about the global scenario, the growth of solar power in Spain, the German model of feed in tariff, the opportunities that exist in the Indian situation and the experience of one of the developers in bidding in the Indian National Solar Mission.
The convention had varied sessions including Techno-Economic Advancements in solar, Financing and market development , Project Development and Operational Excellence and Evolution of solar by 2012: Role of Government and Industry.
The discussions started with discussion on the progress globally in solar technology,options available with solar developers in terms of technology and the techno-economic feasibility of solar projects. The discussion then moved on to financing of the projects and the bankers expressed their concerns with regard to project financing and indicated that most of the funding would have to be balance sheet funding. There were also some brief discussions on the off grid potential of solar and the emphasis of the mission on off grid solar and solar collectors.
The discussion since moved onto experience of project developers and there was a lot of discussion on the importance of Balance of Supply equipments including the importance of power electronics. The discussions also moved onto the bankability of the PPA’s.
The developers and bankers were all in consensus that there would be a lot of clarity and feedback in the next couple of years as the short listed developers for the first stage sign their PPA and move into the implementation stage of their projects. They also discussed the risks of very high feed in tariff the rise and fall of solar in Spain, the stable growth of Germany and its leadership position.
The convention concluded with the release of the “Solar roadmap for Tamil Nadu” by Dr. M.K Stalin, Deputy Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.
The convention featured a number of eminent speakers from the industry and government including, Dr. Christodas Gandhi, IAS, Additional Chief Secretary & CMD, TEDA, Mr. SN Eisenhower, Co-Convenor, Panel on Infrastructure CII Tamil Nadu, Mr. Ashok Kumar, Managing Director, Udhaya Energy Photovoltaics Pvt Ltd., Mr. Pashupathy Gopalan, Chief Executive, Sun Edison Energy India Pvt Ltd, Mr. Ravi Shankar, GM- Commercial, Orb Energy Pvt Ltd, Mr. GK Ramakrishnan, Tata BP Solar India Ltd, Mr. Narasimhan Santhanam, Energy Alternatives India, Mr. Manav Futnani, HSBC Securities & Capital Markets India and Mr. Sanjay Chakrabarti, Partner & India – Cleantech Leader, Ernst & Young, Mr KN Krishnamurthy, Director, Sunera Solar Engineering Pvt Ltd, Mr. Chandan Guha, Mahindra Solar One, Dr. C Palaniappan, Planters Energy Network, Mr. Siddharth Malik, MD, Megawatt Solutions Pvt Ltd.