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Pune: 13 power plants shut due to coal shortage, MSEDCL asks customers to use power sparingly

Vijay Singhal, Chairman and Managing Director of MSEDCL, has said that the power utility is purchasing electricity at a high cost of Rs 20 per unit so that citizens are not inconvenienced.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune |
Updated: October 11, 2021 10:58:32 pm
Pune power plants, Pune coal shortage, Pune electricity, Nashik, Coal shortage, Pune, Pune news, Indian express, Indian express news, Pune latest newsGeneration sets at Chandrapur, Bhusawal, Nashik and some other places are not working. (Representational)

Coal shortages across the country have led 13 thermal power plant units supplying power to Maharashtra State Electricity Regulatory Commission (MSEDCL) to temporarily shut down, prompting the state power utility to ask consumers to sparingly use electricity from 6 am to 10 am and from 6 pm to 10 pm to balance the demand and supply.

Vijay Singhal, Chairman and Managing Director of MSEDCL, has said that the power utility is purchasing electricity at a high cost of Rs 20 per unit so that citizens are not inconvenienced. “For the next 10 days or so the situation is comfortable as we expect the coal situation to ease,” Singhal said.

“There is a shortfall of approximately 15-2000 MW and we are purchasing power from the open market even if the cost is as high as Rs 20 per unit,” Singhal told The Indian Express.

As a result, 3330 MW power supply has been cut off and efforts are being made to provide power supply from hydropower and other sources along with immediate procurement to fill the gap.

Thermal power generation has been declining for the last few days due to coal shortages across the country. The units shut now are Mahagenco’s Chandrapur, Bhusawal and Nashik units of 210 MW each, Paras-250 MW and Bhusawal and Chandrapur’s 500 MW each. Apart from this, four units of 640 MW of Postal Gujarat Power Limited (Gujarat) and three units of 810 MW of Ratan India Power Limited (Amravati) are closed.

At present, power is being procured from the open market to fill the gap of 3330 MW between demand and availability of electricity. Due to the increase in demand for electricity across the country, the purchase price of electricity is becoming more expensive. 700 MW of electricity is being procured from the open market at a rate of Rs 13.60 per unit.

In addition, electricity is being provided through Koyna Dam as well as other small hydropower plants and non-conventional energy sources.
Demand for electricity has also increased due to rising temperatures in the state. MSEDCL supplied 17,289 MW of electricity in the state (excluding Mumbai) on Saturday.

Due to rains in some parts of the state in the last 24 hours, demand for electricity declined today.

On Sunday morning there was a demand of 18,200 MW in the state.

To avoid load shedding of electricity, as per the order of Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission, three-phase electricity is being supplied on agricultural connections for 8 hours during day or night in a circular manner.

Power utility officials said that reducing the consumption of electricity during the peak demand period will reduce the gap between demand and supply and there will be no need for load shedding.

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