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Tamil Nadu plans to invest 5,000 crore in renewable energy, power transmission
The Tamil Nadu government will embark on a renewed push towards energy investments totaling over Rs 5,000 crore to bolster transmission infrastructure, modify targets in renewable energy policies and commission a floating solar plant modeled after a similar project in Gujarat.
Announcing the projects in the state Assembly, chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami said there would be a new energy policy, too. “To mitigate the effect of evaporation (from dams) and step up solar procurement in the state, the power utility (Tamil Nadu Generation & Distribution Company) and the Solar Energy Corporation of India will combine, in a first, to execute a 250 MW, Rs 1,125-crore floating solar plant,” Palaniswami said.
SECI, a dedicated central public sector undertaking for solar power, is working on floating solar projects elsewhere as well. Earlier this year, it unveiled tenders for a 150 MW plant in Uttar Pradesh’s Rihand Dam. A top state official aware of the project told ET the idea has its genesis in a similar project by SECI in Gujarat, but at a much smaller level at 30 MW.
“SECI has done the feasibility studies; the Vaigai dam and Veeranam tank were the two probable locations,” the official said. The government did not specify when the project will be commissioned.
Besides announcing 25 substations across six districts in Tamil Nadu, the chief minister said there will soon be a new energy policy to meet the targets set by former chief minister J Jayalalithaa in a document she launched in 2012, which envisaged the state’s solar power capacity at 8,884 MW by 2023.
In a solar policy note it launched in 2012, Tamil Nadu targeted a capacity of 3,000 MW from the renewable energy form by 2015.
In its policy note for the year 2018-19, the energy department said the solar capacity had touched 2,034 by March 2018. The chief minister, in his speech on Tuesday, submitted that the Solar Policy 2012 would be “suitably amended” to meet the targets set in the Vision 2023 document released by Jayalalithaa.