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About This Project

A Sri Lankan renewable energy developer is planning to develop a 20 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) power plant in Myanmar. RMA conducted a pre-feasibility study for the proposed power plant. Assessment of solar resource, preparation of conceptual design, capacity optimization, studying grid interconnection options and assessing financial viability were covered in the pre-feasibility study.

ADB provides a loan to the Government of Sri Lanka, a sum of US$ 50 million, earmarked for refinancing of loans granted by participating financial institutions to electricity customers and investors to install rooftop solar PV systems. RMA evaluate the economic viability and the financial viability of the project for participating financial institutions, electricity utilities as well as electricity customers. A technical study was carried out to analyze the impact of roof top solar PV integration at low voltage distribution level considering an actual distribution scheme.

Chip Mong Insee Cement Corporation plans to install a rooftop solar photovoltaic electricity generation system at their new cement manufacturing facility in Cambodia. This feasibility study was carried out to assess the technical and regulatory issues related to the project, and to examine the, financial viability. The main outputs of the study are (i) forecast grid electricity tariffs, (ii) project financial viability, and (iii) evaluation of project implementation models.

This project is to build capacity with the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) and the Transmission/Distribution Licensees to implement tariff and other regulatory measures, since the implementation of the new regulatory regime under the Sri Lanka Electricity Act 2009. RMA provides counterpart services and hands-on support to PUCSL in the development and implementation of the Tariff Methodology, other allowed charges, revenue filing by licensees and analysis, support for conducting public consultations, development of end-use customer tariffs, development of codes for retail services, distribution and grid operations. The work also includes the development of a tariff reform and subsidy rebalancing road map to return the loss-making power industry to profitability by year 2015. RMA staff developed Distribution and Grid codes for Sri Lanka.

RMA was selected by the Government of Sri Lanka to conduct the economic, trade and legal components of the feasibility study on the planned interconnection between the electricity grids of Sri Lanka and India. Through a multidisciplinary team established for the purpose in association with Sri Lanka Institute of Policy Studies, RMA conducted extensive studies on the costs, routing options, trading options and business models for the grid interconnection, and modeled the expected transfers to derive the financial and economic and indicators of project feasibility.

RMA was selected by US Agency for International Development and Deloitte, Inc. of USA to conduct a study on the pricing of electricity produced from Independent Power Plants (IPP) in Sri Lanka. This was part of a study of 20 private power plants in South Asia, to ascertain the competitiveness of tariffs offered by IPPs in relation to utility/Government projects.

Three IPPs in Sri Lanka who agreed to participate in the study were examined in detail for their investments, operating costs and tariffs. Similarly three Government/Ceylon Electricity Board projects of comparative technology were analyzed to calculate the off-take price and any adjustments required to represent any concessions received.

The study included the development of financial models for each selected private or government project, technical evaluation to assess their operating performance, making adjustments to account for concessions, and arriving at an adjusted levelised price.

The World Bank initiated the Energy Services Delivery (ESD) project in Sri Lanka to support the development of renewable energy-based power generation. ESD project provided substantial amount of financing for small hydropower plants operating in the grid-connected mode selling electricity to the national utility – Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) on a standardized power purchase agreement.

The purchase tariff is calculated and announced by CEB at the beginning of each year. This tariff calculation is based on the principle of avoided costs to the utility as result of inputs to the grid from small power plants.

Concerns had been expressed about the methodology adopted by CEB to calculate the tariff, and the suitability of the principle of avoided costs itself. Furthermore, small power developers have claimed that they too should receive a capacity charge similar to what is paid to the large independent power producers. Views had also been expressed about the lower levels of the tariff, which was not adequately stimulating a rapid development of the remaining small hydroelectric sites and other renewable sources of energy.

The World Bank under the ESD project assigned RMA to conduct a study to analyze and propose improvements to the present method of CEB tariff calculations, and to examine whether capacity credits accrue to the utility with the embedded generators.

The work extensively used CEB’s WASP and METRO planning models.

RMA was selected by the World Bank and Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB, the National Electricity Utility in Sri Lanka) to prepare a Guide for grid interconnection of small power plants embedded in the distribution system of Sri Lanka.  RMA provided the Consulting Services to this project jointly with DULAS Ltd. of UK.

Connection of relatively small, embedded power plants to the CEB network commenced in the mid-1990s. These embedded power plants are mostly built, owned and operated by non-utility Companies and individuals.  Presently, most of these are small hydroelectric plants, with a few Combined Heat and Power plants also in operation. There are purpose-built, investor-owned power plants as well as those with a captive load, such as a tea factory.

The interconnection agreement between the CEB and the Generator is based on a Power Purchase Agreement, which has been standardised by the CEB. The technical requirements for the safety and protection of equipment used for the interconnection were guided by the G/59 Technical Recommendations published by the Electricity Association of the UK. There was a need to streamline the design, testing and commissioning of the interconnection of  embedded power plants with the Grid to match specific situations in Sri Lanka.

RMA in association with DULAS Ltd. of UK, developed the Guide Book, after studying the specific requirements and characteristics of both the CEB grid and the small power plants. Services provided to CEB also included two Training Courses conducted by RMA/DULAS.