The total cost of conventional power with the cost of RE certificates for RPO compliance is much lower than the tariff of biomass power plants
Punjab's Power Minister, Harbhajan Singh, has called on the central government to provide Viable Gap Funding (VGF) to support biomass-fueled power plants and address the issue of stubble burning by farmers.
During the conference of Power and New and Renewable Energy Ministers, Singh highlighted the cost disparity between conventional power and biomass power plants, which is approximately Rs 8 per kWh.
He emphasised the need for VGF from the Government of India to make power procurement from biomass plants more competitive for distribution companies (DISCOMs).
Additionally, Singh requested permission to use coal from the Pachhwara coal mine in private thermal plants in Punjab, as the entire cost of coal from this source is being covered by the state's consumers.
Addressing agricultural concerns, Singh called for the extension of the 30% subsidy on irrigational solar pumps to cover pumps with 15 HP or higher. This move aims to encourage farmers to make greater use of renewable energy for irrigation.