Will bring regulations for rights of 'prosumers': Union Power Minister

Rutam Vora Kevadia (Gujarat) | Updated on October 11, 2019 Published on October 11, 2019

R K Singh asks State Power Ministers' to join reduce carbon footprint

In order to encourage self-sustaining energy consumption model in the country, the Union government is planning to come out with regulations to protect the interests of energy 'prosumers' - the energy consumers who also generate it through renewable sources.

"We are going to come out with regulations, which lays down the rights of consumers and the rights of 'prosumers'. This is another category, which we are introducing," said R K Singh, Union Minister of State for Power (Independent Charge), Government of India at a media briefing. The Minister on Friday inaugurated the Conference of Power and New & Renewable Energy Ministers of States and UTs at Kevadia on the banks of Narmada river.

"Earlier there were only electricity consumers. Now there are prosumers, who produce energy, consume energy and take any additional requirement from the grid. We want everyone to become a prosumer," Singh said. The two-day event kicked-off on Friday with Power and Energy Ministers and Secretaries from all the States and Union Territories as participants for the same. There is also likely discussions on ramifications of reneging the Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) for renewable energy signed by the States.

The Centre is understood to have clearly indicated to the States that the PPAs should not be re-negotiated and the provisions under PPAs should be enforced in letter and spirit. However, the Union Power Minister also urged the State governments to clear the dues of the power generating players (including solar and wind power) by the state distribution companies (Discoms). "Today, the outstanding for generation companies is Rs 59,000 crore. If the ease of doing business and sanctity of contracts and certainty of payments are assured, then players will set up generation units," he said urging the State ministers to take steps to clear the dues.

The government is also looking to have pre-paid smart card for electricity consumers in the next three years throughout the country. "Some states want to do it in one year. But the overall we have set a target of three years to rollout this across the country," said Singh adding that it is beneficial for all including Discoms, poor consumers and the generating companies.

On the one-nation, one-tariff, Singh stated that the idea was brought to the notice of the government. "But it is yet to be examined. We have different forms of generation, gas, hydro, coal, renewable. So we have a pooled power cost. Therefore, such ideas need to be examined."

The Minister also informed that there will also be discussions about the viability of our systems and structures and how to make them sustainable. "The end result is going to be a power system which is viable, sustainable, Provides 24x7 supply, which has ease of doing business and which provides the choice to the consumer, which reduces the price of power. These are our objectives and we will achieve it," he said.

Published on October 11, 2019

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