Uttar Pradesh has acted swiftly in encouraging the uptake of solar by releasing draft rooftop solar PV regulations quickly followed by the final guidelines. An attempt has been made to replicate the Gujarat solar model which comes as a welcome surprise. While reading the final UPERC Regulations for ‘Rooftop Solar PV Grid Interactive Systems Gross/Net Metering’ released on 20th March, 2015, one notices that the state is giving a choice between net metering and gross metering.
Also, clearly indicating how they plan to handle the electricity being fed into the grid by putting a tab of feeding a maximum of 15% into the distribution transformer of that area. The feel one gets after reading the policy is encouraging. The state is trying to do its bit to live up to the dream of 24*7 power promised by the Modi government, in a fairly structured manner. This blog aims to provide a brief analysis from an end consumer’s perspective weighing the pros and cons. To become Sunkalp Energy’s Solar Advisor and take opportunity of this new policy in Uttar Pradesh, contact us.
With the choice given between net-metering and gross-metering, solar has become a very attractive option and is likely to have a high demand in the state. Predicting the same, UPERC has clarified that applications will be accepted on a first come first serve basis with a validity of 180 days. So consumers are likely to face competition in installing solar on their rooftop- a drastic change from the current situation when the uptake is bleak. However, the rate at which the unadjusted energy credits in net-metering are refunded at the end of the financial year is only at ₹ 0.5/unit. This indirectly encourages rooftop owners to install solar just to meet their demand and no more. Hence, those residential consumers who are trying to really earn money of selling solar to the grid- gross metering is the appropriate option. Eligible consumers for gross-metering would be refunded at the following tariff:
The policy also provides a big push to developers who want to set up systems on leased rooftops by allowing gross metering from them as well. Gross metering is definitely the way to go for residential consumers. The power fed to the grid will have pre-set tabs. The Distribution Licensees (Pooorvannchal, Madhyanchal, NPCL, Dakshinanchal) within the state shall update their websites with the available capacity for feeding in power on distribution transformers (15% of total) at different locations by June 20th 2015. This would be updated within a month of the start of the following financial years. Till then applications are invited for installation of systems. Any consumer/third party owner can claim accelerated depreciation benefits on the rooftop solar PV system only if they are availing net metering as defined in the regulations. This has the following implication: those who have applied for gross metering are not eligible to claim accelerated depreciation benefits. So for business owners, net-metering is the way to go for tax benefits. Net-metering consumers (non-obligated RPO entities) also qualify towards compliance of RPO for the Distribution Licensee. And since these end consumers are being allowed to sell RECs while producing power from their system as an additional benefit, hence, they would be willing to sell them at floor prices facilitating trading for RECs.
Finally, the application process is simple for consumers. They can refer to the regulations document for details (Page 6-9)]. It has been detailed below in the flowchart. It can take anywhere between 10 days to 5.5 months for the entire process to be completed depending on how fast both parties [end consumer(C) and Distribution Licensee(D) ] act.