Odisha will soon join the long and rapidly expanding list of Indian states that have launched or are planning to launch solar power tenders.
The Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA) will soon float tenders for large-scale solar power projects. Two tenders of 450 MW and 50 MW will be offered for interested developers to bid on. The projects shall be set up with a target to help the state utility meet its renewable purchase obligation.
The projects shall be developed under Phase II Batch IV of the National Solar Mission wherein prospective project developers will receive viability gap funding. The government aims to develop at least 5 GW of solar power parks under this scheme.
Last year, the state government had announced plans to set up 1 GW solar power park. The capacity shall be built in clusters at an estimated cost of Rs 6,500 crore (US$1 billion). The planned tenders may well be part of this solar power park.
Recently, the central government increased the target of solar power share in total electricity consumption from 3% to 8% by 2022. Subsequently several state governments increased their own solar power capacity addition targets and announced plans to launch more solar power tenders.
Odisha was incidentally among the first Indian states to auction solar power project specifically to meet the renewable energy obligation. Few years back it had auctioned a 5 MW solar power project which can be considered as the stepping stone of the steep fall in solar PV tariff bids that followed and continue till date. The project was won by a company at record-low tariff of Rs 7.00/kWh (US¢11/kWh).