• MNRE has introduced Mode-8 under its Solar Parks Scheme seeking to lay down guidelines for the development of UMREPPs
  • Projects need to be completed within 2 years on land to be made available by the SPPD
  • Solar/wind/hybrid with or without storage projects will be allowed to be developed under UMREPP
  • Projects can be developed under developer mode or EPC mode or a combination of both

The Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has introduced a new mode for the Development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Solar Power Projects. Mode-8 comes in addition to the existing 7 modes and lays down guidelines for the implementation of Ultra Mega Renewable Energy Power Parks (UMREPP).

Included in the country’s existing Solar Park Scheme, the UMREPPs will have the state government enabling solar power park developers (SPPD) procure land for project development along with facilitating transmission infrastructure for solar/wind/hybrid power parks with or without storage system, the government announced in January 2020.

The new Mode-8 stipulates a SPPD to be any central or state public sector undertaking (PSU), state government organization or any of their subsidiaries; it could also be a joint venture. Land will be made available on the condition that project development will be completed within 2 years, to be extended for another year only under ‘extreme cases’. Progress of the project will be monitored by a committee comprising government officials and independent industry experts.

SPPD will be entitled for compensation under central financial assistance (CFA) for the development and management of the UMREPP. Projects can be developed in a developer mode through tariff based competitive bidding or through an EPC mode or any combination of both. CPSUs will be free to take a call to set up renewable energy projects based on the EPC mode, under central schemes like the CPSU or any of the UMREPPs.

Detailed guidelines are available on the MNRE website.

A 2019 news report in online news portal Mint says these projects were proposed to each have 2 GW capacity to achieve economies of scale and further bring down solar and wind power tariffs.

Recently, the Uttar Pradesh government announced a 600 MW solar power plant under the UMREPP to be developed by the Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency (UPNEDA) along with the Tehri Hydro Development Corporation of India (THDC).