IWEA’s petition opposing Gujarat’s wind auction has been dismissed for a second time

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The IWEA had petitioned the Madras High Court against that auction as well, but the court allowed the process to go ahead. After the auction, the IWEA voluntarily withdrew its petition.

BENGALURU: The Indian Wind Energy Association’s (IWEA) petition opposing Gujarat’s first ever wind auction has been dismissed for a second time by the Gujarat High Court, paving the way for holding the auction as scheduled on Wednesday.

A division bench of the court comprising Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice Vipul Pancholi on Tuesday turned down the IWEA’s plea that the auction should not be held since the Centre had not yet issued guidelines for doing so, as required under Section 63 of the Electricity Act.

It was touch and go with the decision coming just a day before the auction was to be held. “It is a victory for us,” said an official of the Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd (GUVNL), which is conducting the auction. “The auction will take place as planned.”

The petition had initially been filed before the single judge bench of Justice Biren Vaishnav in the same court, but was dismissed on November 6, following which IWEA appealed again before a division bench.

GUVNL had first announced the 500 MW wind auction in mid-June this year and intended to hold it in mid-July. However, it did not get clearance from the state’s power regulator until early October, due to which the entire process was delayed. Following the regulator’s consent, the auction was originally scheduled for November 1, but the IWEA petition, and the initial stay that was granted due to it, forced GUVNL to set a fresh date of November 15.

Despite the absence of central guidelines, Tamil Nadu has already held a 500 MW wind auction in end August. The IWEA had petitioned the Madras High Court against that auction as well, but the court allowed the process to go ahead. After the auction, the IWEA voluntarily withdrew its petition.

Every wind auction so far has seen the winning tariff drop further and speculation is rife about how low it will go with the Gujarat auction. The first auction in February this year, conducted by Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), saw a winning bid of Rs 3.46 per unit, at a time when the prevailing wind tariff in different states, fixed by their respective power regulators, varied between Rs 4 and Rs 6. The Tamil Nadu auction lowered the winning tariff to Rs 3.42 per unit, while SECI’s second auction in October, brought it down to Rs 2.64 per unit.

Source: Energy World from The Economic Times

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