The states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar,
Telangana, Chhattisgarh and Uttar Pradesh (UP) have submitted proposals to the
Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE)
to replace a combined 1,067 MW of energy from conventional power plants with
solar. The MNRE has asked states to submit a Letter of Intent (LoI) by October
14, 2016 and plans to replace the conventional power projects with solar power
projects for irrigation purposes.
According to a government document,
the MNRE has received the following proposals from five states:
Sources at MNRE said that there are many
conventional energy projects that are in operation with the primary motive of
supplying power for irrigation projects and since irrigation does not require a
24/7 power supply it is easier to replace such projects with solar. Only conventional
energy projects that can be shut down without adversely affecting the grid would
be considered, and for that reason Bihar for example has proposed only 1 MW of capacity
to be replaced with solar.
A MNRE official also added that in order to
complement a number of irrigation projects announced by the Telangana state
government, the state has proposed an ambitious 1,000 MW capacity to be
replaced with solar. The official went on to state that all Indian states had
been invited to participate in this program but only five states submitted
The MNRE will come up with guidelines regarding
the replacement program. The capacity to be replaced in each state will be auctioned by
state nodal agencies.