Punjab inks pact with SJVNL to procure 1200 MW Solar Energy
In a significant move to meet Punjab’s future electricity demand and promote clean energy, the Punjab government has entered into a new agreement with Satluj Jal Vidyut Nigam Limited (SJVNL) for the purchase of 1200 MW of solar energy. This decision comes as Punjab aims to enhance its solar energy capacity and ensure sustainable and reliable electricity supply to its citizens.
Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann elaborated on the details of the agreement during a press conference at the Punjab Bhavan in Chandigarh. He highlighted that the government had floated a tender through the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) for the purchase of solar energy at a cost of INR 2.53 per unit from locations such as Bikaner and Bhuj. Additionally, 200 MW of power will be sourced from Hussainiwala at INR 2.75 per unit. These rates reflect a cost-effective approach to acquiring solar energy, saving the state an estimated sum of INR 431 crore, he said.
CM Mann said this step is a departure from the previous practices of procuring electricity at higher rates. He emphasized that the power purchase agreements negotiated by past governments had been criticized for their excessive costs. He stressed that the current agreement will contribute to significant savings for the state treasury, aiding the transmission expansion projects that are aimed at minimizing transmission losses.
The Chief Minister assured the public that the benefits of this agreement will extend to the farmers of the state. He stated that the reduced cost of electricity will be passed on to the farmers, ensuring that the agricultural sector continues to receive affordable and uninterrupted power supply. Mann firmly stated that there will be no additional charges or hidden costs for the farmers; instead, the state will continue to provide subsidized electricity.
Highlighting the importance of sustainable energy solutions, Chief Minister Mann remarked that this initiative will set an example for other states to follow, driving Punjab towards becoming a surplus power state.
The Chief Minister also revealed that the government is in the process of finalizing the purchase of the Goindwal thermal plant, indicating the state’s dedication to exploring various avenues for power generation and sourcing.