Sunday, January 22, 2017
Wednesday, January 4, 2017
October 2016 must count as a significant month for the Indian power sector. It was when the conventional power capacity additions met the targets set for the 12th Plan Period (2012-17). For the first time in history, the plan targets were met five months ahead of schedule.
The Centre aimed to get installed 88,537 MW of thermal, hydro and nuclear power capacity during the plan period; as at end October, the capacity additions were 88,928.22 MW, or 100.44 per cent of the target.
By the end of November, the number increased to 90,463.22 MW, or 102.18 per cent of the target, according to data provided by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA). However, beneath the broad numbers, the story is not as rosy. While thermal exceeded its targets, hydro and nuclear fell short.
Within thermal, State government and private sector projects exceeded their targets, while those of the Centre stayed below the finish line. As at the end of November, India’s electricity generation capacity from conventional sources, stood at 262,917.28 MW.
Adding the 45,916.95 MW of renewable energy capacity (wind, solar, biomass and small hydro), the total power capacity in the country stood at 308,834.28 MW. Coal power accounted for 187,802.88 MW of this. CEA’s data also shows that power deficit has been almost eliminated. In November 2016, peak time and non-peak time power deficit were down to 0.6 per cent and 0.7 per cent of the demand.
A number of completed thermal plants — notably, around 10,000 MW of gas-fired plants — are lying shut. For example, only one of the two 600 MW units of IL&FS in Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu, is operational, though the other unit is also ready for generation. Industry experts say that when these plants begin to produce energy, India will become surplus on power.
Union Power Minister Piyush Goyal on Tuesday said two more states will join the Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY) on Wednesday and the third a week thereafter.
"Almost the entire country has now joined UDAY. Tomorrow (Friday), two large states will join the scheme, followed by one more very large state after one week," he said. He did not name the states.
"Thereafter, about 90-95 per cent of the national electricity utility debt of the discoms will come under UDAY. Maybe, one or two states will be left. I urge those states to join the scheme," he said after addressing a Confederation of Indian Industry National Council meet. He claimed there was no shortage of power anywhere in the country.
Asked whether the government will scale down coal production in the light of surplus power and coal, the minister said: "It is a dynamic situation. We continuously keep monitoring on how the demand-supply situation evolves. Power production has grown over 8.5 per cent in November. I would like to make sure we never relapse into coal shortage situation."
Indicating significant growth in the power transmission sector, the Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has estimated an investment of Rs 2.6 lakh crore till 2022.
These and other estimates form the base for a draft National Electricity Plan-Volume II, which would be the basis for investment and policy planning in the sector. Inter-regional capacity addition during the 13th plan (2017-22) is estimated at 45,700 Mw, from the present 63,650 Mw by the plan end, said CEA in the draft.
The investment figure, it said, included an estimate of Rs 30,000 crore in transmission systems below 220 kv. About Rs 1.6 lakh crore would come from states and the other Rs 1 lakh crore from Power Grid Corporation of India. The government is planning to increase the size of projects and scope of work in transmission. Inter-state lines with capacity of around 56,000 Mw are being planned by the end of the 13th plan.
In the first volume, CEA had said more more thermal power generation capacity wasn't needed but supply needed to be more accessible and affordable. And, that renewable energy generation would be 20.3 per cent and 24.2 per cent of the total energy requirement in 2021-22 and 2026-27, respectively.
CEA says the already planned transmission corridors between regions is sufficient to cater to variable dispatches at peak times, with provisos.
The estimate is that India would need 100,000 circuit km (ckm) of transmission lines and 2,00,000 MVA transformer capacity of substations at 220 kv and above voltage was expected to be added in the 13th plan. It has suggested that investment be invited through competitive bids.
“It is expected that a total of 107,454 ckm of transmission lines and 287,836 MVA of substation transformation capacity additions are likely to be achieved during the 12th plan,” it has said. Various high capacity transmission corridors are in various stages of implementation and most are likely to be commissioned by 2021.
India’s peak demand for power is expected to rise from the current level of 153 GW to about 690 GW by 2035-36, according to the Perspective Transmission Plan of the Draft National Electricity Plan prepared by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).
The CEA is the policy ideation and demand projection arm of the Ministry of Power. The report notes that this “can at best be an indicative plan giving broad transmission corridors across various regions and possible international exchange corridors.”
According to the CEA, the demand projection till 2022-36 includes the 14th Plan (2022-2027), 15th Plan (2027-2032) and first three years of 16th (2032-2036) Plan.The massive increase in power generation and transmission infrastructure would require an expenditure of Rs. 2,60,000 crore during the 13th Plan (2017-2022) alone. This also includes an estimate of Rs. 30,000 crore in the transmission system at below 220kV voltage level.
The generation projections under the draft National Electricity Plan note that there will be no need for coal-based power generation capacity addition in the country from 2017 to 2022. Effectively this suggests that all new projects during the 13th Plan need to be restricted to the transmission sector.
Integration of renewable energy into the grid will be a focus area, according to report. The transmission corridors between various regions are sufficient to cater to variable dispatches of wind and solar, both during evening peak and noon time (when solar dispatches are high), provided the gas generation is reduced to zero and coal based generation are also brought down as shown under various scenarios, the report said. The analysis assumes that, the all-India peak dispatch from wind would be 50 per cent of the wind installed capacity due to spatial diversity. It is also assumed that the all-India dispatch from solar plants would be 60 per cent of the installed capacity during summer months and 50 per cent during rest of the months.
State-run power equipment maker BHEL today said it has successfully commissioned another 600 MW coal-based thermal power plant in Telangana.
"The unit has been commissioned at the 2x600 MW Singareni Thermal Power Project (TPP) located in Adilabad district in Telangana. The project has been developed by Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL), India's second largest coal mining company," BHEL said in a statement.
According to the statement, this is the second 600 MW unit commissioned by BHEL at Singareni TPP. The first unit of the project was commissioned in March, 2016.
BHEL-built 600 MW rating sets comprise a 4 cylinder turbine designed in-house. So far, the company has contracted 21 sets of 600 MW each, of which 17 have already been commissioned. A large number of similar sets ensure easy availability of spares and operator's familiarity.
The company is a major contributor to Telangana's power sector with over 85 per cent of the coal-based power stations, amounting to 5,740 MW.
Reposing confidence on BHEL s capability of setting up power plants, proven technological excellence and superior performance of equipment, the Telangana state utility has placed orders to the company for executing around 6,000 MW of thermal power projects in the state, on Engineering Procurement Construction (EPC) basis.
BHEL has established its engineering prowess by successfully delivering higher-rated units such as 600 MW, 660 MW, 700 MW and 800 MW thermal sets, having a high degree of indigenization, it added. KKS JM
Green seems to be the catchword for the government heading into the next year as it gears up to achieve 175 gigawatt of clean energy by 2022 through auction of 1,000 MW of rooftop solar power, Rs 13,000 crore investment in solar parks and a Rs 21,000-crore package to boost local manufacturing of panels.
By all yardsticks, 2016 remains a watershed year when solar tariff slumped to Rs 4 per unit and wind projects received a major thrust. The government is set to switch gears in 2017 to make India a hub for one of the largest installations of clean energy sources by 2022.
Minister for New and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal offered a glimpse of things to come while speaking to PTI. Scaling up of rooftop solar programme, scheme to encourage domestic manufacturing of solar panels and making wind power affordable through auction of sites all fill up a packed 2017.
His ministry has in its sight Rs 1 lakh crore investment for the sector and is looking at 20 GW of power generation from non-conventional sources in 2017-18.
Beginning with speeding up the tempo for solar panel installation at homes, schools and hospitals through subsidies in 2016, plans are afoot to expand the rooftop programme to government buildings by providing target-based incentives.
In the November auction of 500 MW, subsidies for installation of as much as 432.7 MW of rooftop solar capacity were lapped up by 122 developers. A fresh tender for one gigawatt (1,000 MW) is now in the works.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government is eyeing generation of 100 GW from solar power alone by 2022. Rooftop solar capacity almost doubled to 1,000 MW in 2016 and the aim is to take this to 40 GW.
Also on the table is a green corridor to transmit 2,000 MW of power from 34 solar panels across 21 states.
For good measure, Goyal said, a scheme to promote domestic manufacturing of solar panels will become a reality in 2017. The Rs 21,000-crore module aims to create 5 GW of photovoltaic manufacturing capacity by 2019 and 20 GW by 2026.
India's renewable energy generation capacity stands at 45 GW.
According to Goyal, wind power is up next after successful reduction in solar tariff through transparent auction of sites. A mobility scheme is on the anvil to achieve 100 per cent electric vehicle-based transportation for India by 2030, he said without giving out specifics.
Early next year, the ministry will organise Global RE- Invest 2017 India-ISA Partnership, the second edition of the bi-ennial Renewable Energy Investors Meet and Expo to bring in investors. The event will build on RE-Invest 2015 and explore the advances to help meet India's ultimate target of adding 175 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022.
The ministry is keen on fostering competition among players, particularly in the wind energy space, to bring down tariff and make it a viable source of electricity for consumers.
The Global Renewable Energy Investors meet is the world's largest renewable energy investors gathering to be organised in 2017, Goyal said.
He spoke of launching renewable energy fund under the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF). The ministry has been working on this USD 2-billion fund to make private players invest in the sector.
In 2017-18, the government is eyeing 20,450 MW power capacity addition from renewables, including 15,000 (solar), 4,600 MW (wind), 750 MW (biomass) and 100 MW from small hydro power (of up to 25 MW).
A total of 7,518 MW of grid-connected power generation capacity from renewable sources has been added this year (January to October 2016).
In 2016-17, a total of 1,502 MW capacity has come on board till October-end this year, making a cumulative realisation of 28,279 MW. Now, in terms of wind power installed capacity, India is placed at the 4th rank after China, the US and Germany.
As for solar power, a total of 1,750 MW capacity has been added till October-end this year, making it a cumulative 8,728 MW.
After bringing solar tariff to a record low of Rs 3 per unit, the minister indicated making wind power affordable.
He said, "There will be a wind auction to transparently reduce the tariff."
The government has planned solar energy from every roof in the country and there will be expansion of rooftop solar programmes next year. It has envisaged 40 GW of solar power from rooftop alone out of the total 100 GW planned to be added by 2022.
This flows from the need to push rooftop solar in a big way against the backdrop of a target of 40 GW grid connected solar rooftops by 2022. So far, about 500 MW of rooftop solar has been installed and about 3,000 MW has been sanctioned for installation.
All major sectors like the Railways, airport, hospitals, educational institutions, government buildings of central, state and PSUs are being targeted, besides the private sector.
A massive Grid Connected Solar Rooftop Programme will be launched with 40 GW target. State Electricity Regulatory Commissions of 30 states/UTs notified regulations for net-metering and feed-in-tariff mechanism. Besides, funding of Rs 5,000 crore was approved for solar rooftops.
A total sanction of USD 1,300 million has been received from the World Bank, KFW, ADB and NDB which will enable SBI, PNB, Canara Bank and IREDA to fund such projects at an interest rate of less than 10 per cent.
The ministry has tied up with ISRO for geo-tagging of all the rooftop plants using ISRO's VEDAS portal.
To reduce import of solar equipment from other countries, particularly from China, the ministry is keen to encourage domestic production to meet the huge power demand.
The minister said there will be focus on Make in India for solar power next year and a scheme to this effect may be launched. The government has also planned launch of founding conference of International Solar Alliance.
About use of renewable in farm sector, he said, "We will focus on Prosperous Farmer -- Pollution Free India. There will be scheme for Bio-mass like rice husk utilisation next year."
Major programmes such as implementation of solar parks, Solar Defence Scheme, have been launched during the past two years.
The increased use of indigenous renewable resources is expected to reduce India's dependence on expensive imported fossil fuel.