Energy policy panel approves investments in community power plants
Thailand’s National Energy Policy Committee, chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, has approved, in principle, basic guidelines for the establishment of community-based, non-fossil fueled electricity plants.
Energy Minister Sontirat Sontijirawong said, after the committee meeting on Monday, that the community-based power plant project will generate investments estimated at about 70 billion baht, generate about 700 megawatts from solar cells and bio mass and integrate with the power grid next year.
Power plants, which have been built or were close to completion before the approval by the National Energy Policy Committee, will be allowed to join the ‘Quick Win” project and can sell their electricity to the state, said the minister.
Investors can apply to join the project, but the amount of electricity to be purchased by the state will not exceed 10 megawatts. A committee will decide which producers’ power will be purchased based on the best offer and the “Quick Win” project will be given highest priority in the buying decisions of the committee.
There are two investment models, namely a joint venture investment between the private sector and state organizations under 60:90 proportional investment or investment by community enterprises for communities of at least 200 households.
The purchase price of the electricity will be based on the price list approved by the National Energy Policy Committee on February 17th 2017. The prices are 2.90 baht/unit of solar energy, 4.8482 baht/unit for bio-mass electricity from power plants which have a capacity of 3 megawatt or less, 4.2636 baht/unit for bio-mass electricity from plants having more than 3 megawatts capacity and 5.3727 baht/unit for electricity generated from bio-gas.