GOI greenlights ₹13,595 crore ISTS schemes for rajasthan and karnataka

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The Government of India has given the green light to new Inter State Transmission System (ISTS) schemes aimed at evacuating a substantial 9 GW of renewable energy (RE) power from Rajasthan and Karnataka. These initiatives, designed to propel India’s renewable energy infrastructure forward, will be implemented through the Tariff Based Competitive Bidding (TBCB) mode, further reinforcing the country’s commitment to achieving 500 GW of RE capacity by 2030. Out of this ambitious target, 200 GW has already been connected, marking significant progress in India’s renewable energy journey.

Detailed Overview of the Approved Schemes

Rajasthan Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) Power Evacuation Scheme

The power evacuation scheme for the Rajasthan Renewable Energy Zone (REZ) is poised to transfer 4.5 GW of renewable energy power from various complexes within the state. This comprehensive plan is segmented into three primary areas:

  • Fatehgarh Complex: Responsible for evacuating 1 GW of RE power.
  • Barmer Complex: Tasked with transferring 2.5 GW of RE power.
  • Nagaur (Merta) Complex: Set to evacuate 1 GW of RE power.

This power will be routed to crucial regions in Uttar Pradesh, specifically Mainpuri Region, Fatehpur, and Orai. The project is slated for completion within two years, with an estimated cost of approximately ₹12,241 crore.

Karnataka System Strengthening Scheme

In Karnataka, the system strengthening scheme is designed to evacuate another 4.5 GW of RE power, focusing on the Koppal and Gadag areas. This initiative aims to bolster the state’s infrastructure, ensuring efficient transmission of renewable energy. The project, estimated to cost around ₹1,354 crore, is expected to be completed by June 2027.

Strategic Importance and Implementation

Enhancing Grid Stability and Reliability

The approved schemes are pivotal in enhancing grid stability and reliability, addressing the intermittency issues commonly associated with renewable energy sources. By establishing robust transmission networks, these projects will ensure the seamless integration of renewable energy into the national grid, thereby supporting India’s energy transition.

Economic and Environmental Benefits

The implementation of these schemes will not only boost economic growth by creating numerous job opportunities but also significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, aligning with India’s commitment to mitigating climate change. The shift towards renewable energy will also reduce dependence on fossil fuels, promoting energy security and sustainability.

Tariff Based Competitive Bidding (TBCB) Mode

The decision to implement these projects through the Tariff Based Competitive Bidding (TBCB) mode underscores the government’s commitment to transparency and cost-effectiveness. TBCB allows for competitive bidding, ensuring that the projects are awarded to the most efficient and cost-effective bidders, ultimately benefiting the end consumers.

Technical Specifications and Infrastructure Development

High-Capacity Transmission Lines

The schemes involve the construction of high-capacity transmission lines capable of handling large volumes of renewable energy. These transmission lines will traverse challenging terrains, necessitating advanced engineering solutions and cutting-edge technology to ensure reliability and efficiency.

Substations and Grid Connectivity

New substations will be established, and existing ones upgraded to handle the increased load. These substations will be equipped with state-of-the-art technology to facilitate efficient power evacuation and grid connectivity. The integration of advanced monitoring and control systems will further enhance the operational efficiency of the grid.

Renewable Energy Integration

The integration of renewable energy from Rajasthan and Karnataka into the national grid will be facilitated through strategic interconnections. These interconnections will enable the efficient transfer of power across regions, ensuring that surplus renewable energy can be utilized where it is needed most, thereby optimizing resource utilization.

Timeline and Milestones

Rajasthan REZ Scheme

  • Commencement: Immediate, following approval
  • Completion: Within two years
  • Key Milestones:
    • Completion of Fatehgarh complex infrastructure
    • Establishment of transmission lines from Barmer complex
    • Integration of Nagaur (Merta) complex power evacuation

Karnataka System Strengthening Scheme

  • Commencement: Immediate, following approval
  • Completion: By June 2027
  • Key Milestones:
    • Development of Koppal area infrastructure
    • Establishment of transmission lines from Gadag area
    • Full integration into the national grid

Financial Implications and Funding

Investment Breakdown

The total investment for these projects is approximately ₹13,595 crore, with the Rajasthan scheme accounting for ₹12,241 crore and the Karnataka scheme for ₹1,354 crore. This substantial investment underscores the government’s commitment to advancing renewable energy infrastructure.

Funding Sources

Funding for these projects will be sourced from a combination of government allocations, private sector investments, and international financial institutions. The TBCB mode will play a crucial role in attracting private investments, ensuring the financial viability of these projects.

Impact on Local Communities

Job Creation and Skill Development

The construction and operation of these transmission schemes will create thousands of jobs, providing employment opportunities for local communities. Additionally, skill development programs will be initiated to equip the workforce with the necessary skills to participate in these projects.

Infrastructure Development

The development of transmission infrastructure will spur ancillary infrastructure projects, such as roads and housing, further contributing to regional development. Improved infrastructure will enhance the quality of life for local communities and support long-term economic growth.

Environmental Stewardship

The projects will adhere to stringent environmental standards to minimize their impact on local ecosystems. Comprehensive environmental impact assessments will be conducted, and mitigation measures implemented to preserve biodiversity and protect natural habitats.

Conclusion

The approval of new transmission schemes worth ₹13,595 crore marks a significant milestone in India’s renewable energy journey. By facilitating the evacuation of 9 GW of renewable energy from Rajasthan and Karnataka, these projects will enhance grid stability, promote economic growth, and contribute to environmental sustainability. The strategic implementation through the TBCB mode ensures transparency and cost-effectiveness, setting a benchmark for future infrastructure projects. As India progresses towards its goal of 500 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030, these transmission schemes will play a pivotal role in shaping a sustainable and resilient energy future.

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