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Extend net metering facility to S Rly’s solar plants: TNERC

The Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Commission (TNERC) has directed the TANGEDCO to extend the low tension and high tension net metering connectivity to the Southern Railway to install a 4 MW rooftop solar power plant in its stations and offices, including the Central, Egmore and Tambaram stations, in the State.

Extend net metering facility to S Rly’s solar plants: TNERC


The Southern Railway had applied to the TANGEDCO seeking net metering connectivity for its rooftop solar plants with capacity varying from 50 kW to 1000 kW in various locations in the State which consists of both HT and LT power connections. The TANGEDCO’s non-conventional energy sources has allowed the net metering facility for the LT connections but for the HT connection, it recommended the Railways to opt for parallel operation with grid without net metering.

Citing the commission’s 2013 order allowing net metering facility for the HT III tariff category, the Southern Railway moved the TNERC stating that not allowing the net metering for solar projects at HT supply points would lead to poor investment from developers which finally hamper the development of rooftop solar panel arrangement.

Pointing out that the state electricity regulatory commission has extended net metering facility to all LT and HT consumers, the Railways said that parallel operation of a solar energy system without net metering would lead to poor utilisation of solar power plants and excess generation over the instantaneous load could not be exported to the grid which consequently leads to monetary loss to the Railways.

TANGEDCO replied that to study the impact of net feed-in of solar energy in distribution network, it has facilitated net metering facility only to eligible LT consumers. The State government in February last year came out with the Tamil Nadu Solar Energy Policy 2019. As per the new policy, the net feed-in of solar energy scheme would be available to all LT category of consumers while there was no explanation about the HT consumers.

TNERC, in its order said that as Southern Railway has filed the petition before the commission and hearings were also held before the new solar policy, it directed the TANGEDCO to provide LT and HT metering connectivity to the Southern Railway for the 4 MW solar rooftop plant. “All other future cases shall be as per the available orders of TNERC from time to time. If LT/HT net meters are not available with TANGEDCO, Southern Railway may be permitted to procure meters as per the TANGEDCO specification,” it said.

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