The APEPDCL has taken up a pilot project of separating agricultural feeders in rural areas from domestic and industrial feeders, and it will be completed in the next two months. Depending upon its success, it will be taken up in other mandals paving the way for identification of pockets for setting up of industries in rural areas, where land price is relatively less and 24-hour power could be supplied to industry, EPDCL CMD Ahmad Nadeem has said.

Addressing a CII session on energy efficiency here on Friday, he said the project, if implemented in the entire State, would cost Rs.450 crore. Setting up of high-voltage distribution system presently going on would be completed in the next two years, he said.

Mr. Nadeem said during the current season, the power supply position to the industry was quite good. Load-shedding was resorted to only from April 1 to 17, after which supply was fully restored because of several advance measures initiated.

Last year, load-shedding began in February and lasted up to May, he said. Next year, it would be much better with bidding for power, the CMD said. Owing to 3,000 MW power purchase agreements, the situation would further improve by 2014.

The EPDCL, with lowest distribution loss (7 per cent) in the country, was further planning to set up more sub-stations, he said.

Solar power plants

Answering questions, Mr. Nadeem said that the EPDCL was planning to set up 10 MW to 15 MW solar power plants in the Agency area and the proposals were pending with the Union Ministry concerned. Setting up solar energy parks required a lot of land at the rate of one acre per MW. But it would be an option in future. Stressing the need for conservation, he said 1 unit saved was equal to 1.25 unit generated considering T&D losses.

CII Vizag Zone immediate past chairman Sriram Ravi Chander, who presided, said small units found it difficult to cope with the load-shedding in April.

In the technical session that followed, vice-president (Operations) of Mahindra and Mahindra V.S. Venkatraman made a presentation on power saving techniques in industry. CII past chairman K.V. Bhaskar spoke.