Daily News Wrap-Up: SJVN’s Tender for 1.2 GW Solar Projects Across India

SJVN has invited bids from developers to set up 1.2 GW interstate transmission system-connected solar power projects anywhere in India under tariff-based competitive bidding. The last day to submit the bids is June 17, 2024. Bids will be opened on June 21. The minimum project capacity that a bidder can offer is 50 MW, and the maximum is 600 MW. Bidders can offer projects at multiple locations, given each project has a minimum capacity of 50 MW. Bidders should also submit a tender fee of ₹29,500 (~$353). They must also remit a bid processing fee of ₹1.5 million (~$17,967)/ MW for each project.

Gujarat Industries Power Company (GIPCL) has invited bids for a balance of system package for a 500 MW solar power project at Great Rann of Kutch, Khavda, Gujarat. The last date for the submission of bids is June 13, 2024. GIPCL has been allotted land for a renewable energy park with a capacity of 2,375 MW in Khavda. A solar project with a 600 MW capacity is under development at the park.

Lithium battery startup PointO has secured ₹62 million (~$743,236) in seed funding, with Equirus InnovateX Fund leading the round with an investment of 50 million (~$599,364). The funds are expected to enable the company to build a full-stack lithium battery ecosystem, including manufacturing, financing, and servicing lithium batteries. Led by IIT-Guwahati alumni, PointO plans to expand its physical centers to more than ten cities in the next 12 months.

Public infrastructure finance company REC Limited recorded a total income ₹127.07 billion (~$1.52 billion) for the fourth quarter of the financial year 2023-24, a 24% year-over-year (YoY) increase. REC’s net profit for the quarter rose 33% YoY to 40.79 billion (~$488.86 million). REC loan approvals for the quarter totaled 328.75 billion (~$3.94 billion), a 57% YoY decrease. The disbursements grew 34% YoY to 393.7 billion (~$4.71 billion).

Indian Oil Corporation has invited bids from technical consultants for project management consultancy services to set up renewable energy projects at various locations across India. The contract period will be for three years, with an estimated value of 198.6 million (~$2.38 million). The last day to submit the bids is May 21, 2024. Bids will be opened on the same day.

The Central Electricity Regulatory Commission has recognized the Change in Law event and mandated compensation, agreeing with NTPC and Telangana distribution companies that any impact should be recovered through usage charges for two solar projects. The Commission outlined a methodology for compensation payments, setting a normative interest rate and annuity term. It directed reconciling additional expenditure and carrying costs, subject to the Supreme Court’s orders in relevant matters.

Charge Zone, an India-based electric vehicle charging network firm, has secured a commitment of $19 million from British International Investment, the United Kingdom’s development finance institution, to accelerate the expansion of EV charging infrastructure in India. The investment would enable Charge Zone to expedite the expansion of its high-speed charging network for electric cars, buses, and trucks across key cities and highways in India. The company also plans to roll out more than 1,500 super-charging stations over the next 18 months.

Avaada Energy, the renewable energy division of Avaada Group, has secured green financing of ₹11.9 billion (~$143 million) from the State Bank of India, a public sector lender. The 20-year-old financing facility will facilitate the development of a 400 MW utility-scale solar power project located in the Surendra Nagar district of Gujarat. Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam, a government of Gujarat agency involved in bulk electricity procurement and distribution, will procure all the electricity generated by the project.

Hindustan Petroleum Corporation (HPCL) has invited bids on behalf of its subsidiary HPCL Renewable & Green Energy for the engineering, procurement, and construction package of a 100 MW solar power project at Galiveedu, Annamayya district, Andhra Pradesh. Approximately 500 acres at the Galiveedu Solar Park has been identified for the plant’s construction. The deadline to submit the bids is May 17, 2024. Bids will be opened the same day.

The European Parliament has approved the Net Zero Industry Act to enhance net-zero technology production within the European Union. The Act targets Europe to produce 40% of its net-zero technology needs by 2030 and capture 15% of the global market for these technologies. The Act supports various technologies crucial for the EU’s climate and energy goals, including all renewable technologies, nuclear, industrial decarbonization, grid, energy storage technologies, and biotech.

Under current policies and market conditions, the global renewable capacity is projected to hit 7,300 GW by 2028. However, this trajectory falls short of the goal to triple global renewable energy capacity by 2030, as advocated by the International Energy Agency in alignment with its Net Zero Emissions by 2050 scenario. Governments must address existing challenges and expedite policy implementation to bridge this gap and surpass 11,000 GW by 2030. These challenges encompass policy uncertainties, insufficient investment in grid infrastructure, administrative hurdles, and financing constraints, with solutions tailored to each country’s context.

Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory have proposed enhancing cell and module efficiency to record levels, scale manufacturing, address reliability and durability issues, and figure out the design of hybrid tandem solar modules to better commercialize them.

U.S.-based First Solar’s net income for the first quarter of 2024 surged by 455% to $236.6 million from $42.6 million in the same quarter last year, with the solar module manufacturer benefitting from the higher sales volume and gross margins. The company’s net sales in the same period rose by 45%, reaching $794.1 million, up from $548.3 million last year, primarily driven by increased demand for First Solar’s thin-film photovoltaic modules.

Norway-based independent power producer Scatec reported a net loss of NOK 26 million (~$2.3 million) during the first quarter of 2024, marking an improvement of 73% on a YoY basis from a net loss of NOK 98 million (~$8.8 million). While the company got a tax benefit of NOK 12 million (~$1.08 million) during the quarter, the overall profit for the quarter was still negative.

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