TANGEDCO officials warn that the relief might be temporary

A sharp increase in power generation from wind mills in the State over the last three days has provided the much-needed respite from the spate of power cuts that bedevilled residents of the southern districts.

Officials of Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO), Madurai Region, had blamed the nine-hour power cuts in the last week on a sudden decline in wind power. Apart from six hours in day time, people had to endure several spells of power cuts in the night hours that caused particular hardship to children and the aged.

Now, with power generation from wind mills climbing sharply from 574 MW on Thursday (August 23) morning hours to 3,247 MW on Sunday morning , the power authorities have much more leeway to manage the grid and spare power consumers from incessant load shedding.

Power consumption from wind mills has increased by more than three-fold from 22.833 million units (MU) on Wednesday (August 22) to 74.293 million units on Sunday. Commensurately, TANGEDCO also reduced resorting to load shedding as the relief (quantum of power) it obtained through this method declined dramatically from 60 MU on Wednesday to 3 MU on Sunday.

However, given the inherently volatile nature of wind flow and with the season almost drawing to a close, TANGEDCO sources told The Hindu that the present relief could prove fleeting. Tellingly, wind power again declined from 3,327 MW on Sunday evening to 1,705 MW on Monday morning.

Contingency measures

Industries have urged TANGEDCO to quickly put in place a strategy to meet the power demand once the wind season gets over by September, when the power generation from wind mills is expected to plummet to a few hundred megawatts or less from the current levels of 2,000 MW to 3,000 MW.

The TANGEDCO Madurai Region comprises the five southern districts of Madurai, Dindigul, Theni, Sivaganga and Ramanathapuram.

As on July 31, Tamil Nadu, with a total installed capacity of 7,084.175 MW, continues to occupy the first place in India in harnessing of wind energy, accounting for 40 per cent of the country’s total capacity of 17,389.31 MW.

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