The striking drop in wind power tariffs is being looked at as a matter of concern by the wind industry.
The tariffs are lower than the previous record of Rs 2.64 per unit in wind auctions conducted by Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) in October. The previous lowest tariff was Rs 3.46 per unit arrived at another SECI auction in February this year.
Leading industry players think that aggressive fall in tariffs do not make much sense as there is an entire pipeline of auctions announced by the government for wind and solar auctions.
Sprng Energy Private Limited and KP Energy Limited bid the lowest at Rs 2.43 per kWh, for 197.50 MW and 30 MW capacities, respectively.
Sunil Jain, CEO of Hero Future Energies, said there must be a rationale behind developers quoting such low prices.
“The falling tariffs are upsetting the applecart, and the industry could do very well at tariff around Rs 2.75 per unit, which would be a win-win situation for all parties,” said Jain, who is also the president of Wind Independent Power Producers’ Association.
Indian Wind Energy Association (Inwea), in a petition filed in Supreme Court earlier this month, said “competitive bidding could squeeze the developers of wind generators to put more pressure on the OEMs.”
The second lowest bids in the auctions were received at Rs 2.44 per unit by Verdant Renewables Pvt Ltd, Betam Wind Energy Pvt Ltd, and Powerica Ltd for capacities of 100 mw, 29.90 mw and 50 mw, respectively.
Leading independent power producer ReNew Power quoted Rs 2.45 per unit for 200 mw capacity.
Among the 12 players who participated in the bid, the highest bid was placed at Rs 2.95 per unit by Hero Wind Energy Private Limited. Some industry experts believe that the Gujarat auction results are not representative of the industry and may not be sustained as the capacity scales up.
“A new low was not unexpected as the lull in wind energy PPAs made good sites and equipment available,” said Kameswara Rao, leader – energy, utilities and mining at PwC India.