Commercial and Industrial (C&I) segment is distinctly dependent on a reliable supply of electric energy for their productions or services. Any interruption in the electric supply leads to the loss of production and, consequently, revenue loss.
Traditionally they have only the option to put up their captive power supply to fill in the gaps due to electricity interruptions. However, captive supply is costly, generally 2-3 times the cost of the grid supply.
But with the proliferation of roof-top solar and distributed solar (D-Solar), C&I segment is finding a viable alternative to meet their energy demand and have extra earnings by peer-to-peer trading surplus energy.
In India’s present regulatory regime, consumers putting roof-top solar and having surplus electric energy have two options.
- One is to put back surplus electricity in the grid and either adjust it to their annual consumption or get a preset cost that is generally much lower than grid energy.
- Another option is to sell the surplus in OTC (Over the Counter) market or power exchange.
With the growing C&I renewable power market worldwide, many new alternative procurement options have also opened up.
Virtual power purchase agreements (VPPAs), green tariffs, internationally tradable RECs (I-RECs) have already been successfully tried and tested in many countries. There are also proposals to set up dedicated renewable power exchanges and facilitate peer-to-peer (P2P) trading.
A collaborative effort to undertake pilot programs and consumer awareness initiatives is needed to build market confidence and accelerate the drive to increase renewable power consumption by C&I segment.
The adoption rate of solar rooftop panels is accelerating. The installed capacity of solar rooftop augmented from 117 MW to 1922 MW from the period between 2013 to March’ 2020.
Greater adoption of clean energy by C&I segment is critical for meeting the national renewable energy and climate change commitments.
Reference- BRIDGE TO INDIA research, Economic Times, Business Standard