The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) on Thursday released the timelines for bidding for the allocation of seabed to develop offshore wind sites off the coast of Tamil Nadu in for FY24 and FY25.

The Ministry has identified a total of 1,443 sq km of seabed at the Gulf of Mannar off the coast of Tamil Nadu for a cumulative capacity of 7,215 megawatts (MW) in the current and next financial year.

In FY24, the MNRE will open the bids on February 1, 2024 for 828 sq km of seabed in Zone B for four sites with a total capacity of 4,140 MW, while in FY25, it has identified 3 sites spread over 615 sq km for a capacity of 3,075 MW. No date has been identified for FY25 yet.

“The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy proposes to hold bids for the allocation of offshore wind sites off the Tamil Nadu coast through its nodal agency National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE) for the development of offshore wind energy projects for sale of power under Open Access Mode/Third Party Sale/sale through Power Exchanges or for captive consumption,” the Ministry said.

The bid process will be on the basis of ‘single stage two envelope’ wherein the first envelope will be the techno-commercial bid and second envelope will be the financial bid wherein the bidder quotes the site lease rental with a minimum floor price of ₹1 lakh per sq km per year, it added.

The leasing of the seabed area to the developer will initially be for a five years, extendable by one year on a case-to-case basis. The developer has to commission the offshore wind energy project including conducting required studies/surveys within this time period.