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.