Power Brand

Net-Metering: A boon to solar consumers

Solar energy systems few years back were installed with huge battery banks to store solar energy generated during daytime for night usage. This was not a cost effective solution for consumers as it required not only high initial system cost for batteries, but also customer had to incur high maintenance and Battery replacement expenses every 3-4 years. This high cost became a bane to consumers and hence solar energy systems did not find many deployments. For industries, it became a deterrent due to high cost of batteries.

However with a view to promote rooftop solar plants in a big way and conserve energy wastage, MNRE and state nodal agencies took a positive policy decision to allow grid network to be used as a storage system for excess solar units generation, under ‘net-metering’ policy. This opened up a huge market for Solar rooftops wherein consumer can do away with battery systems all together and pump in extra solar units generated during day time into grid network and get compensated for the units at night time.

Net metering is the practice of allowing utility customers with renewable electricity generation systems to sell their excess power to the electrical grid. For energy producers, it decreases strain on transmission lines and power generation facilities, allowing for decreased maintenance costs. And for local governments, it decreases pollution and decreases dependence upon imported fuel sources.Net metering offers several benefits to local consumers, such as decreasing their energy costs and improving local quality of service.

Net-metering allows (i) the power consumer to use the grid as a ‘virtual battery’ thereby eliminating the need for storage batteries, (ii) maximize the space available to install an optimally-sized solar system and (iii) homes and businesses to save money, to monetize its vacant rooftop and to become a decentralized power plant.

Anybody with an empty roof, a car park, an unused piece of land, can be a power producer. As solar power today costs less than commercial or industrial tariff, the investment returns for a rooftop power plant owner today range from 15 per cent per year to 35 per cent per year with income-tax depreciation benefits. If the business is willing to share these returns and doesn’t want to invest upfront, financial investors can own the solar asset and sell power to the business. It’s a win-win arrangement; the investor makes annuity-like return, avails the tax depreciation and the business/power consumer benefits from lower power costs.

Our experience, any commercial or industrial rooftop of a hotel, school, college, office building, IT park, manufacturing facility, railway station, airport, etc. can take advantage of cheaper solar power and lower or eliminate its cost of power. There is virtually no electrical load that solar cannot power and therefore it makes its versatile and ideal to use in several different applications

Greenrays is aggressively offering to its Customers, net-metering based solutions in industrial, education & residential markets, wherein the benefits are significant. The future of renewable energy growth is from decentralized power generation which allows everyone and anyone to be a power producer.

Authored by:
Kanchan Tungare, Head –Business Development,
Greenrays Enersol Pvt Ltd

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