Well Prepared for Summer Power Surge: Energy Minister KJ George

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Bengaluru, March 27, 2024—Energy Minister K J George said that Karnataka has taken adequate steps, chalked out all remedial measures, and is fully geared to meet the State’s energy requirements during the upcoming summer months.
The State’s power consumption per day has touched 329 MU (Million Units)—the highest ever, compared to the previous year’s consumption per day of 300 MU. Energy Minister K J George added that this year’s peak load is 17000MW+, compared to last year’s peak load of 15300MW+.
In a bid to meet the rising electricity demand, I have instructed Energy Department officials to ensure uninterrupted power is supplied to students preparing for exams and seven-hour uninterrupted power supply to farmers in the State, the Minister added.
Power generation has remained the same in the last four years. Had the level been better during the previous BJP Karnataka government, the State would not have faced such a situation today. Lack of rain has also adversely affected power generation. Power generation doubled during our first term of government. In 2013-14, the electricity generation was 14,048 MW. It had increased to 27,780 MW by 2017-18, Energy Minister K J George added.
Along with this, this year’s monsoon has been very poor. It has led to increased power consumption across all households and farmers’ irrigation pump sets, roughly translating to a 45% increase in consumption. The irrigation pump sets have a lion’s share of increased power consumption. Despite such shortfalls, the government is well prepared to handle the summer power demand and will ensure that the energy consumption of consumers, farmers, and industries is being prioritized.
To augment thermal power generation, the government has also decided to import 2.5 Lakh tonnes of coal from Indonesia and blend it with locally sourced coal. This is expected to help existing thermal plants generate 600 to 800 MW of additional energy in addition to their existing capacity of 3,400 MW and will cater to peak summer demand.
*To address the enormous power demand during the upcoming summer season, the State has taken several measures to mitigate the same*
1. State Thermal plants were primed for maximum production to meet high demand during March & April 2024.
2. Thermal power plants have been the pillars of power generation in the State. The three State thermal plants have generated the maximum ever power production of 22,000 MU this year (the earlier highest was last year at -18,000 MU), and the daily energy contribution is about 3250MW, or about 75 MU/day.
3. The limited Hydro potential (only half of the reservoir is full because of poor monsoons) was conserved and rationed by using carefully to ensure the same quantum (20MU/day, or about 1000MW, as and when needed) is available in the high demand period of March and April.
4. The bilateral energy swaps (energy taken this year would be returned by Karnataka next year) from Uttar Pradesh and Punjab were taken up much in advance to cover the period up to June 2024. On average, this generates about 900 MW every day.
5. Section 11 notification was used to obtain power from state-embedded generators. In spite of an adverse ruling of the courts on Section 11 usage, at present, 500MW RTC power is being obtained daily from state-embedded private generators.
6. The Solar and Wind power plants (including the private sector) are usually operated on a ‘Must Run’ basis, and their generation, dependent on prevalent Solar & Wind conditions, is being made available to the State.
7. Power from the central grid (302MW) is availed from the national unallocated share by proper representation of the need and necessity. This is apart from the 150 MW surrendered to the central grid last year, which has been taken back to Karnataka. This additional power has been available since December month.
8. The State’s share of power in Central Generating Stations (CGS) of about 4000MW has been regularly obtained and utilized by maintaining good coordination with central authorities.
9. To meet any sudden or unanticipated increase in demand, power is procured through the Govt of India specified power exchanges effectively in a transparent manner.
10. To meet  the rising demand, The Energy  Ministry is also working round-the-clock to commission a 370-MW combined Cycle Gas Powered Plant in Yelahanka.
11. Chief Engineer-rank officers have been appointed for each district to closely monitor the power supply and ensure that equitable power supply is provided across the State. MDs of ESCOMs, KPTCL and SLDC (State load dispatch centre) are also closely monitoring the situation under the over-all supervision of Energy Minister and ACS, Energy.
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