Indian gov't asks power companies to ensure no load-shedding in summer

(Xinhua) 09:08, March 10, 2023

NEW DELHI, March 9 (Xinhua) -- India's federal power ministry Thursday said it has crafted a multi-pronged strategy to ensure adequate availability of power during the upcoming summer months.

The federal power minister R. K. Singh has directed power sector companies to ensure there is no load-shedding during the period.

"Power minister asked all stakeholders to closely monitor the situation and take proactive actions to meet the electricity demand during the coming months," the ministry of power said.

In a recently held review meeting chaired by Singh and attended by various senior officers mainly from the power sector, the ministry of coal and the ministry of railways, detailed discussions were held on various aspects to meet the high electricity demand in the upcoming months, especially during April and May.

"As part of the strategy, the power utilities have been directed to undertake maintenance for coal-based power plants well in advance so that no planned maintenance is required during the crunch period," a power ministry official said.

The power ministry has already directed all imported coal-based plants to run at full capacity from March 16.

Officials said adequate coal stocks would be made available at the coal-based power plants and the railway board has assured the availability of enough rakes for the transport of coal to these plants.

The railways would be providing 418 rakes to different subsidiaries and also enhance the number of rakes in due course so that sufficient coal stock can be maintained at power plants.

According to officials, the gas-based power would be used to meet any peak demand. The state-run National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) has been directed to run its 5,000 MW gas-based power stations during the crunch period in April-May.

In addition, 4,000 MW of additional gas-based power capacity would be added by other entities for availability during the summer months.

Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL) has already assured the ministry of power of the necessary supply of gas during the summer months.

As per estimates of the Central Electricity Authority, the peak electricity demand is expected to be 229 GW during April, the highest period in the country.

The energy demand is expected to be 142,097 million units (MU) during April, the highest in the year 2023 before reducing to 141,464 MU in May and further declining continuously to 117,049 MU during November.

The unusually high temperatures in India last year triggered a spike in power demand, leading to outages in many states.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Wu Chaolan)


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