JSW Energy and others win 1.2 GW wind power bids in Karnataka

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An onshore wind farm. IAC file photo

JSW Energy, Adani Power, Ayana Renewable and Evergreen Renewables have emerged winners in SECI’s (Solar Energy Corporation of India) pure wind energy auction for 1.2 gigawatt (GW) capacity in Karnataka. The auction discovered tariffs significantly below the reserve price. 

The last pure wind capacity auction in the country was conducted 18 months ago. SECI had put the reserve price – bids above which are not entertained – at Rs 2.99 per kWh.

Adani Renewable Energy Holding Fifteen won 300 MW of the auctioned capacity, quoting the lowest tariff of Rs 2.77 per kWh. Ayana Renewable Power Six won 300 MW at Rs 2.78 per kWh. Evergreen Power Mauritius won 150 MW at Rs 2.78 per kWh, and JSW Energy got 450 MW at Rs 2.78 per kWh.

In the last over one year, the government has been keen on inviting bids for solar and hybrid (wind+solar at 8:2 ratio) power projects, while pure wind power projects haven’t received much attention. It is expected the auctions will bring the life back into the wind power industry that has been facing the double whammy of payment delays from discoms and Covid-19 related disruptions.

Analysts however warn that unless the borrowing costs of these companies are much lower, any tariff below Rs 3.10 per kWh would not be financially sustainable. The wind power industry normally bids for projects with expectations of 15% return on investments. In the previous tranche of bids, the winning tariffs ranged between Rs 3.01/kWh and Rs 3.41/kWh.

The bidders who failed to make the cut in the latest auction are Azure Power who bid for 300 MW at Rs 2.79/kWh, O2 Power SG for 300 MW at Rs 2.80 kWh, Sirdi Sai Electricals for 300 MW at Rs 2.84/ kWh, AMP Energy for 150 MW at Rs 2.88/kWh, Tunga Renewable for 150 MW at Rs 3.04/kWh, ReNew Vyan Shakti for 300MW at Rs 3.28/kWh, and Halvad Renewables for 300MW at Rs 3.39/kWh.

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