Tamil Nadu

Wind energy generators complain of curtailment of power by the State government

Wind energy generators complained about major curtailment of power (backing down of generation) by the State Load Despatch Centre (SLDC) and Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (Tangedco) on Sunday. Some of them pointed out that States like Karnataka are selling their surplus green power on the exchange while it is going waste in Tamil Nadu.

K. Venkatachalam, chief advisor, Tamil Nadu Spinning Mills Association, pointed out that wind energy evacuated on May 15 was at 52.27 million units while solar energy contributed to 11.7 million units. The total consumption for the State was 281.44 million units.

If Tangedco/SLDC had allowed the full evacuation of wind energy on May 15, it would have crossed 120 million units. The curtailment went to a very abnormal level and is highly alarming, he said. Mr. Venkatachalam also pointed out that the case was similar for solar energy, and Tangedco could consider selling the power in the real time market on the power exchange.

“We are not only forecasting wind energy but also the demand for Tamil Nadu and sharing it a day early. It is possible for the SLDC/Tangedco to find out how much the surplus power will be,” Mr. Venkatachalam said.

“May 15 being a Sunday, the air-conditioning and industrial load was less. They curtailed wind energy significantly. Last week, they took wind energy and sold it to other States. Solar energy is also being curtailed,” said Illango, director, Tamil Nadu Electricity Consumers Association (TECA), a representative body of the industrial electricity consumers in Tamil Nadu.

“On Sunday, there was heavy curtailment. On Monday, there was no curtailment,” said K. Kasthuri Rangaian, chairman, Indian Wind Power Association. He also pointed out that Tamil Nadu was the only State that was curtailing renewable energy generation, despite the wind energy and demand forecasts being shared.

Mr. Rangaian said Karnataka sold its surplus green energy in the power exchange and reportedly generated over ₹2,000 crore annually. “Not sure why Tamil Nadu is not doing it. If the wind power generation is optimal, thermal power can be ramped down. They are not doing it. They consider thermal energy to be their own energy. Wind energy and solar energy as somebody else’s,” he alleged.

Some players blamed the poor grid management for the curtailment. When contacted, a senior official from Tangedco said there was no curtailment. “We are also selling power in the market,” he added.

According to a policy note from the State’s Energy Department for 2022-23, Tamil Nadu has the highest installed wind capacity of 8,615.22 MW, accounting for 25% of the nation’s wind power capacity. With an installed solar energy capacity of 5,303.50 MW, Tamil Nadu stands fourth in India.

Curtailment of renewable energy has been a major legal battle between the Tangedco and the generators in recent times.

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Printable version | May 16, 2022 11:59:25 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/wind-energy-generators-complain-of-curtailment-of-power-by-the-state-government/article65419856.ece