Smart grid: Regulations for Indian distribution considered

India’s Forum of Regulators is considering smart grid regulations for application across transmission and distribution utilities.

India’s Forum of Regulators (FoR) has formulated draft model regulations for state electricity regulatory commissions, which will enable the integration of smart grid technology into the grid.

The draft regulations will cover improving generation, transmission and distribution operations, managing transmission and distribution networks effectively, enhance network security, and integrate renewable and clean energy into the grid and microgrids.

In a submission to the FoR, the need for smart grids was summarised as “Enhancing network visibility and access, promoting optimal asset utilization, improving consumer service levels thereby allowing for participation in operations of transmission licensees, distribution licensees through greater technology adoption across the value chain in the electricity sector and particularly in the transmission and  distribution segments.”

Distribution regulation requirements

Each transmission and distribution utility will have to form a ‘smart grid cell’ within three months of notification of these regulations.

Additionally, distribution utilities will have to undertake baseline studies to “identify the targets and final outcomes for smart grid project programmes and will build the necessary database,” according to a report in the Business Standard.

Smart grid cells will additionally be responsible for formulation of smart grid plans, programmes and projects; design and development of smart grid projects (including cost benefit analysis), plans for implementation, monitoring and reporting and for measurement and verification.

Each cell will have to seek  the necessary approvals for smart grid plans, programmes and projects and be responsible for the implementation thereof.

Provision is being made for transmission and distribution utilities to submit an integrated Multi-Year Smart Grid Plan for their utility concession areas, along with a Multi-Year Tariff Petition or annual revenue requirement submission.