Can AP and Telangana become self sufficient in power in the next decade? This is the big question facing the two states now. The states are planning to attain self sufficiency much before that. While AP has been selected under the 'Power for All' scheme of the Centre and has a mandate to become energy self sufficient in the next one-and-a-half to two years, Telangana has fast-tracked its energy sufficiency plan with a separate transmission corridor.
Currently, there are three projects under construction. One is in Telangana, the Kakatiya Thermal Power Plant in Warangal district with an installed capacity of 600 MW. The rest are in Andhra Pradesh, the Krishnapatnam Thermal Power Plant in Nellore district and the Rayalaseema Thermal Power Plant in Kadapa district. They have installed capacities of 2x800 MW and 600 MW respectively. But the demand for power is huge in both the states.
AP is planning big on power saving apart from power purchases to become energy sufficient in the next two years.
Telangana is confident of reaching energy sufficiency in five years flat.
Efforts on for tying up coal linkages for new units at Rayalaseema and Krishnapatnam.
Under the 'Power for All' project which covers AP, Rajasthan and New Delhi, the state has to supply round the clock power to all consumers within a fixed time frame. The state is currently preparing an action plan on how to go about this. Highly placed sources say the state will require to increase power availability by 15,000 mu in 2015-16 (assuming 9-hour power supply to the agricultural sector).
One way being examined is to step up generation from existing plants by increasing the plant load factor. "The APGenco plants are currently running at 75 per cent PLF. This can easily go up to 95 per cent, but coal supply has to be increased. Efforts are being made for tying up coal linkages for the new units at RTPP and Krishnapatnam," said an insider.
Meanwhile, to attain self-sufficiency the state needs to raise its energy pool from 50,000 mu this year to 65,000 mu next year. Additional power purchases is being looked upon to reach targets in the fixed time frame, and therefore the government has already given the go ahead to buy 2400 MW power.
The AP discoms have already got the go ahead for the purchases and are in the process to bid for the power. "Efforts for the procurement of additional power through short term bids (2,000 MW) for 2015-16, through case-I bidding (25 years from 2018 onwards) have started and for this tenders have been floated by APSPDCL.
Also more power purchases will be made if required as per the action plan," added the source.
Strengthening transmission capacity by expediting interstate transmission projects, construction of new 400 KV, 220 KV, 132 KV substations and booking of transmission corridor in advance from other regions to the south is being looked at. There are also plans to segregate agricultural feeders.
"Effective distribution management by estimating load growth and segregation of agricultural feeders in a phased manner for providing three phase supply to domestic consumers, increasing metered sales, and collection of 100 per cent revenue are the main points. In addition 1000 MW solar parks will be established at Anantapur and Guntur districts. APTRANSCO is also thinking of bids for 1000 MW solar power and energy efficiency to save energy," an official said.
The AP government is currently preparing the demand-supply estimation up to 2020, and AP utilities have floated tenders for 2000 MW through short term bidding (2015-16) and 2000 MW through case-I bidding (25 years from 2018 onwards), totaling 4000 MW. A 4000 MW thermal plant at Pudimadaka in four years is expected to help in the long term.
State is planning a dedicated transmission corridor to power surplus North India.
Telangana has laid down plans to become energy sufficient in the next five years. One of the biggest plan towards this is the government's decision to build a dedicated tran-smission corridor connecting the state to the northern power surplus states like Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
Though some northern states have surplus power, procurement from these states is not possible in the absence of transmission corridors connecting the northern and southern grids. Hence the state's move to build a corridor might be a solution to the problem.
In fact minister for information technology and panchayat raj K.T. Rama Rao had tweeted on the government's plan to tackle the power crunch.
"Firstly, this power crisis is a legacy we've inherited and not something created by the TRS government. Having said that, we are trying our best to address it on three fronts: Short term by purchasing power from neighbouring states and medium term by building transmission lines for grid connectivity between Telangana and power surplus states that are unconnected now," the minister tweeted.
The 4,000 MW thermal plant to be built by NTPC will come as a big filler, but will take at least four years. Also the state plans setting up solar power plants of 10-15 MW capacity to take it up to 1,000 MW capacity in a short period.
The present shortage of power varies from 1,000 MW to 2,000 MW. In addition the yearly growth in power demand is around 10 per cent excluding the requirement of power for Lift Irrigation Schemes (LIS).
"If we take into account the 6000 MW to 7000 MW required for LISs, the total generation capacity to be added in the coming five years is around 11,000 MW to 12,000 MW," said Coordinator Telangana Electricity Employees JAC, K. Raghu.
"As a long term measure, there is need to take up new projects at the earliest. Many sites have already been identified for power projects. The 800 MW expansion project at Kothagudem, 800 MW expansion project at Bhoopalpally and 2x600 MW project at Ramagundam are already being thought of and should be taken up," added the official.
Resolving a crisis
The AP government is currently preparing the demand-supply estimation up to 2020. As for Telangana, it is identifying sites to set up power plants in the long term.
Source- Deccan Herald