Thursday, March 22, 2012

Alex Green Energy Wins India Solar Project With Record-Low Bid

Alex Green Energy, a Kolkata-based developer of clean-energy plants, won the right to develop a 5- megawatt project in a solar auction in India’s eastern Odisha state, pledging to supply power at a record-low rate.

Alex Green has the option to develop the remaining 20 megawatts of photovoltaic capacity from the auction before it’s offered to other bidders, P.K. Mohan, chief executive officer of the Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency, the state-run body overseeing the solar program, said by telephone today.

Under auction rules, Alex Green must complete the project by August 2013. Its bid pledges to sell power to the state-run utility at 7,000 rupees ($142) per megawatt-hour, which is about 28 percent the world average for plants using crystalline-based panels, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It’s also the lowest bid seen in India to date.

The price of solar power in India is closing in on the cost of electricity from coal as global prices of solar products plunge because of declining equipment costs. Solairedirect SA, France’s second-largest producer, bid 7,490 rupees a megawatt- hour in India’s national auction on Dec. 2 to sell photovoltaic- based electricity, half the rate the government proposed.

Odisha Renewable Energy Development is seeking approval from the state government to auction an additional 50 megawatts of solar installations, Mohan said. The capacity will be offered in two batches of 25 megawatts in the next few months, he said.

India has a target to install 20,000 megawatts of solar- energy capacity by 2022, 10 percent of its current generating total that included all energy sources. Less than 1 percent of its existing power is solar-based.

Odisha state was known as Orissa until its name changed in November.


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