The Indian Wind Turbine Manufacturers’ Association (IWTMA) has requested the chief minister of Tamil Nadu to not to remove the wind power banking facility in the state., as the state power utility, Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Company (Tangedco), is planning to scrap the system.
Tangedco has cited the banking of energy by the wind energy producers during the windy season and utilising it later as the reason for its financial loss, and is planning to scrap the practice. During the high generation months, the wind power generation is more than the demand and Tangedco has a facility of banking the power for which it takes five per cent banking charges.
This provision was created to encourage the wind energy sector. But with the installed capacity growing to over 7,000 MW in the State, the state power utility feels that this is no longer needed. The utility has said it purchases the power cheap during the season but when consumers use the banked power, the utility has to buy it from more expensive sources. In a representation to stae electricity regulatory commission, Tangedco said the system of energy banking led to a loss of over Rs 1,200 crore.
However, the IWTMA has sought chief minister, J Jayalalithaa’s intervention in retaining the wind power banking facility in the state. The apex body representing all major wind equipment players in the country has asked the state government to call a meeting of stake-holders in wind energy sector in the state to decide on the issues of wind power banking instead of totally scrapping it.
In a letter to Chief Minister, dated June 22, the IWTMA said, “We humbly request the chief minister to give directions not to remove the banking facility as an ‘open and shut case’ and call for a stake-holders’ meeting and take a matured judicious decision that will be acceptable to all the stake-holders.”
The association argued that the move to scrap the system will stall the proposed wind energy capacity addition of over 5,000-7,000 MW over the next five years. Speaking about the move, DV Giri, secretary general, IWTMA, said, “The proposed move by Tangedco will make investors shy of investment and will lead to capital funds moving away from Tamil Nadu to other states like Gujarat, which is gaining prominence in clean energy investments.”