GS Paper - 3 (Energy)

In order to increase the purchase of renewable energy in the country, the Centre has allowed smaller electricity consumers, below 100 kW, to purchase green energy through open access. Open access allows a consumer to buy electricity from a source of its choice. Earlier, green energy open access was restricted till 1 Mw consumption level.

What

  1. The move is expected to draw the attention of smaller industries and commercial consumers or large households to shift to green energy.
  2. Through a Gazette notification, the union power ministry notified "Green Open Access" Rules, 2022.
  3. It said these rules are for "promoting generation, purchase and consumption of green energy including the energy from Waste-to-Energy plants."
  4. The notified Rules enable simplified procedure for the open access (OA) to green power.
  5. It will enable faster approval of Green OA, Uniform Banking, Voluntary purchase of RE power by commercial & industrial consumers, applicability of OA charges etc.
  6. The decision would provide certainty on open access charges to be levied on green energy open access consumers which includes transmission charges, wheeling charges, cross-subsidy surcharge and standby charges.
  7. Captive Consumers can take power under Green Open Access with no minimum limitation.
  8. The power ministry has also capped cross-subsidy surcharge (CSS) and notified removal of additional surcharge (AS) on open access consumers. This, it said will incentivise the consumers to go green and also address the issues that have hindered the growth of open access in India.
  9. State owned power distribution companies (discoms) impose CSS and AS on open access consumers to cross subsidise their loss over losing a consumer to another supplier.
  10. The notification further said, there will be a uniform renewable purchase obligation (RPO), on all obligated entities in the area of a discom. It has also included the Green Hydrogen/Green Ammonia for fulfilment of its RPO.