Consumer to gain from new power tariff model

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NEW DELHI: In a year or two, power tariff could guide your daily chores such as when you decide to do the laundry or run heavy appliances.

You can also actually reduce your monthly energy bill by feeding electricity from your rooftop solar project into the grid when you are not home or are not running any appliance.

The government on Wednesday laid the groundwork or a consumer-friendly regime by refreshing the power tariff policy , which binds regulators to a roadmap for 24X7 supply , incentivises green energy and removes grounds for litigations and land issues for investments.

The revamped policy indicates a clear-headed approach which takes into account ground realities and makes provisions for states to set the pace, within the given timelines, as well as strike a balance between growth and environment.

There are several takeaways for consumers by way of `time-of-day’ metering, net (two-way) metering and reduced cost of power from expanded capacity to be constructed on land already available with the existing power plants.

The `time-of-day’ metering would entail off-peak rates that would allow consumers flexibility to manage their energy bills better. Net metering would allow consumers with rooftop solar projects to feed into the grid.

“Consumers would become producers,” power mini ster Piyush Goyal said while giving details of the government’s decisions.

The policy also makes it mandatory for both central and state regulators to work out in consultation with state governments a trajectory for achieving 24X7 supply .

There’s reprieve for state utilities burdened by fixed cost payouts for generation capacity they have tied up under long-term agreements but aren’t utilising it becaue of high tariff or cheaper alternatives.

The policy allows generation utilities to use this capacity and sell the power through exchanges and equally share the spoils with discoms. This would help generation cos such as NTPC, which has to idle 1520% of tied up capacity as discoms back down.

Delhi, which has been seeking scrapping of several power pacts with NTPCBSE 0.49 % for
gasfired plants could be one of the beneficiaries. Similar cushion has been provided for power stations running on imported or e-auctioned coal.

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