Power consumption in April lower than April last year

Smriti Kak Ramachandran

Due to frequent power cuts and insufficient generation

Most States overdrawing from the Northern Grid

Discoms lax in finalising power procurement deals

NEW DELHI: The Capital’s overall power consumption this past April has been lower than in the corresponding period last year.

And this has little to do with the city’s energy-saving initiatives. The reason is the frequent power cuts due to under-frequency relays and insufficient generation and procurement of power.

According to the official figures provided by the Delhi Government’s Power Department, the consumption of energy in April 2008 has slipped by 8 per cent from 1,915 MUs in April 2007 to 1,759 MUs.

The decline in energy used is on account of load-shedding carried out by distribution companies in the face of sustained under-frequency relays in the Northern Grid, point out experts in the power sector.

“Since most of the States were overdrawing from the Northern Grid and there were several under-frequency relays in a single day, the power distribution companies had to carry out load-shedding to avoid any damage to the grid. And when the quantum of load-shedding increased, the consumption too decreased,” said an official.

Load-shedding carried out up to May 5, 2007, was 0.405 MUs, while the figure rose to 2.098 MUs for the corresponding period this year.

Indiscipline by States that were overdrawing was not the only reason for lowering the consumption, the power distribution companies too have been way behind in finalising power procurement deals. “Two of the three discoms were a little lax in finalising the power purchase agreements. So while Delhi’s own generation was not sufficient to meet the demand, there was little relief from other sources. The State Government had to petition the Centre for an enhancement in its quota from the unallocated share,” said an official.

Pointing out that the Capita was grappling with an energy shortfall on account of the delay in procuring power by the discoms, the official said: “This past Monday, Delhi overdrew more than 370 MW of power from the Northern Grid and consumers were spared power cuts. But this was possible because the frequency of the grid was stable and allowed overdrawal. If the frequency had dipped, then the discoms would have had no option but to shed load.”

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