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Peak power deficit in March improves to 3.2 %: CEA

Peak power deficit in March improves to 3.2 %: CEA
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Delayed summer and unexpected rains brought the country’s peak power deficit down to 3.2 per cent in March, according to official data.

Peak power deficit -- shortage in electricity supply when demand is at its highest -- stood at 4.7 per cent in March 2014.

According to data by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the power requirement in March was 1,38,938 MW of which the supply was 1,34,532 MW leaving a shortfall of 4,406 MW.

As per a government official, the reason for improvement is unexpected rains and delay in arrival of summer.

Northeastern states of Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram saw a sharp rise in peak power deficit last month at 11.3 per cent. This deficit was 5.5 per cent in March 2014.

Peak power deficit in the southern region states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, Puducherry and Lakshadweep last month was 3.1 per cent as compared to 6.3 per cent in March last year.

North Indian states of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan recorded a shortage of 6.2 per cent last month. This is an improvement from previous year’s 7.7 per cent.

The deficit in the Western region comprising Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Goa came down to one per cent from last year’s 1.5 per cent in the same month.

The peak power shortage in Eastern India (West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha etc) improved to 0.7 per cent last month as compared to 1.8 per cent in March 2014.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Power has set a target of generating close to 1,100 billion units of electricity during the current financial year. Power generation during 2014-15 was 1,048.403 billion units. 

‘Set up evacuation mechanism, rail infra’
To achieve an output of one billion tonnes by 2020, Coal India should establish a matching evacuation mechanism and simultaneously develop rail infrastructure, a Parliamentary panel has said. "The Committee notes that CIL has set for itself an ambitious plan of one billion tonne coal production by the year 2020," the Standing Committee on Coal and Steel said.

"The committee feels that to achieve this target, it is equally important to put into place a matching evacuation of coal mechanism by simultaneous development of rail infrastructure," it said. 

The Committee further said that in order to achieve the planned growth in production and evacuation in future, CIL has undertaken a few major infrastructure projects to be executed by Railways. The rail projects include Tori-Shivpuri-Khatotia line with length of about 93.45 km for North Karanpura coalfields of Central Coalfields Ltd in Jharkhand. Jharsuguda-Barpalli Railway 52.4 km line for IB Coalfields of Mahanadi Coalfields and for evacuation of coal from Mand-Raigarh and Korba Gevra coalfields of South Eastern Coalfields Ltd.

"In this regard, the Committee notes from the submissions made by the Secretary, Coal,... that an institutional arrangement has been made under which, meetings are held every month on pre-fixed dates for sorting out the bottlenecks in respect of three major lines one each in Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Odisha which were hampering the coal evacuation plans," it said.
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