SEVERE POWER CRUNCH IN ANDHRA PRADESH MAKES LIFE MISERABLE
With a population of approximately 8,46,900 and an installed capacity of nearly 15,974Mw of power projects , Andhra Pradesh, rice bowl of Southern India is now facing severe power crunches from the last two months.
Power Generation capacities:
S.NO FUEL CAPACITY
1. COAL 5132 Mw
2. NATURAL GAS 2770Mw
3. HYDRO 3790 Mw
4. WIND & Others 1100 Mw
Coal based power projects are facing severe problems with coal allocation. Coal India Limited, the major coal producer in India, is unable to supply the required quantities of coal to the thermal projects located in the state.
Gas based power generation situation is even worse. With an installed capacity of nearly 2770 Mw, gas based power plants are running with good plant load factors. Such gas based plants are now facing severe problems in fuel availability. With those problems most of the plants are running under the PLF of 47 % only against the 75% firm gas allotment to the power generation companies. This causes severe mis-match between demand and supply of power.
As Andhra Pradesh is a part of southern grid, it is not possible to supply power from the national grid, because only southern grid in our country is not tied with the other grids. Even though some of the states like Gujarat, Delhi and Himachal Pradesh are having surplus power, they can not transfer the power to the southern grid as it is not integrated with the national grid. The power lines that are integrated with the National grid from southern grid can accommodate only 1000Mw of power. This 1000Mw should be distributed among the southern states. This is also a major problem. Because, Tamilnadu is also facing problems with the power and in terms of no. of units of consumption, Tamil nadu stands ahead of Andhra Pradesh. So first preference will be given to Tamilnadu and only a minor part of power will be available to A.P.
Andhra Pradesh stands first in the Hydro power generation. Several prestigious projects like Nagarjuna sagar project, Srisailam Projects are one of the biggest power houses in India with larger generating capacities based on water. All these projects are based on the rain water.
But because of the very low rainfall in this year, it made difficult to produce power from the available water resources. This year, in 2012, the expected rainfall in the months of june-july is almost less than 30 % when compared to the last year.
In this help less situation, power cuts are becoming major problems. Now the problem has become severe that hydro power generation is completely shut down. This causes severe mismatch between demand and supply. As there is no other alternative, DISCOMS started testing the patience of the people with its power cuts.
The following table will explain the severity of power cuts in A.P
S.NO CONSUMERS POWER CUT(IN HRS)
1. Industries 3-4 days in a week
2. Other Small industries and Cement 15 days in a month
3. Very small scale industries 2 days in a week
4. Capital region 3 hrs in a day
5. District head quarters 5-6 hrs in a day
6. Municipalities and mandals 6-8 hrs in a day
7. Villages >12 hrs in a day
Being the fourth largest power producer in the country, the state should be able to look up on the alternatives like renewable resources etc. but in A.P there is no notable capacity of power generation from renewable resources. In terms of wind based power generation, A.P has small generation capacity.
Horrific Summers Ahead:
Day by day our demands are increasing. Along with this our power generation has to be increased. But if we analyze the present situation, one can imagine the horrible hurdles ahead. Now it is the time that everyone has to work out to face the frightening future ahead to make Andhra, POWER ‘FU(E)L’ one.
Author: Mr. Hardeep Penugonda, B.Tech power system engineering from University of petroleum and energy studies