The unprepared for load-shedding that the power consumers in the State had been experiencing these past three-four days is an indication of the shape of things to come in the summer season.
Only by each evening can the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) nowadays announce whether the consumers can expect uninterrupted power supply during the peak hours of consumption — between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. There is shortage in power availability that has to be bridged through purchase from the power exchange. Only at the last moment is it possible to know whether power is available at affordable rates from the power exchange.
This is the situation just after a good monsoon, when the reservoirs are reasonably full, and the overall daily power consumption is relatively low due to continuing favourable weather conditions. The consumers can guess what it will be like in the summer, when the reservoir levels dip and power consumption shoots up due to warm weather conditions.
"We have a peak-hour shortage of between 300 MW and 400 MW of power," a top KSEB official told The Hindu. "It had been a touch-and-go affair these past few months making it available. Now it is becoming increasingly difficult to buy power from the exchange since peak-time cost is shooting past even Rs.20 a unit," the official said.
He said Andhra Pradesh and the new State of Telangana were vying with each other purchasing power from the power exchange as part of their efforts to provide 24x7 power supply to all their consumers. This has suddenly made the southern region power market a very hot place.
Daily power consumption in Kerala will go up from the present range of around 62 million units to around 75 million units during the hot summer season, when the peak-hour load on the grid too will shoot up by more than 20 per cent from the present level, he said, hinting at the inevitability of long hours of load-shedding.
Source- The Hindu