From the heat wave to depleted capacity, and technical snags to coal shortage, states are facing multiple problems in meeting increased demand for power. A look at the situation in some:
Jharkhand: The state has a power consumption of 1,800-2,100 MW during peak hours. Power supply to Jharkhand used to be around 1,850 MW before April, with the government usually managing to meet the shortage of 200-250 MW. Demand has now surged to 2,500-2,600 MW. Damodar Valley Corporation usually supplies 550 MW; CM Hemant Soren has asked it to provide 200 MW more to plug the shortage. The state has also filed its bid on the power exchange, but there is no availability. It is negotiating with private companies.
Jammu & Kashmir: Parts of J&K are facing power outages for more than 16 hours. Demand is 3,000 MW, and supply less than half of that. While shortage in open market is one reason, depleted capacity generation of J&K’s own power projects has added to the woes. The UT’s power projects have an installed capacity of 1,211 MW but produce just over 450 MW. While NHPC-owned projects in J&K have an installed capacity of 2000 MW, they produce less than 1,400 MW.
Of this, J&K receives a little over 150 MW. Officials say J&K has a deficit of around 2,300 MWs but given high tariff and unavailability, it is purchasing around 800 MW.
Rajasthan: Daily power demand in April 2021 was about 2,131 lakh units. This has shot up to about 2,800 lakh units daily. Similarly, peak demand was 11,570 MW, which is now 13,700 MW. Principal Secretary (Energy) A Sawant said that due to a nationwide coal crisis, production has been affected and power plants are not working at full capacity. The state’s plants can generate up to 10,110 MW but are generating about 6,600 MW.
Haryana: Haryana is facing shortage of at least 3,000 MW. CM Manohar Lal Khattar has said the government is making arrangements from multiple sources to bridge the gap. Haryana is in negotiations with Adani Power Limited for restoration of supply from Mundra Power Plant and is expecting restoration of power supply to the tune of 1,000 MW in near future, Khattar stated. Power Minister Ranjit Singh has cited the heat wave and infrastructure projects to explain the rise in demand. “I hope 1400 MW due from Adani Power will be received within one week. I hope that by coming Saturday, the power situation will be fine,” he said.
Punjab: Coal shortage and technical snags are said to be the main reasons behind the shortage. On Wednesday, demand reached 7,800 MW and availability was around 7,000 MW. This led to 2-5 hour powercuts in domestic areas. Industrial areas faced no cuts. Agriculture power use is at a bare minimum now due to wheat harvesting. Thermal plants generate 5,480 MW in Punjab. As on Wednesday, they were generating only around 3,700 MW amid a coal shortage. Officials said around 1,000 MW f capacity is on maintenance and the remaining gap is due to technical snags.
Odisha: Odisha has been facing a shortage of around 400 MW daily against its average need of 4,150 MW and maximum demand of 4,450 MW during peak hours. Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra had on Monday held a meeting on the shortage. According to officials, the shortfall is temporary and the situation will improve within a week. Officials said the shortage is due to a technical snag that halted a 441-MW unit of NTPC in Sundargarh district. An Odisha Power Generation Corporation unit is undergoing annual maintenance.