Power Crisis / The country is facing acute shortage of coal, Threat of power cut continues

Vikrant Shekhawat : May 28, 2022, 05:12 PM
New Delhi. India may face severe coal shortage during the quarter ending September due to high power demand. Reports of depletion of coal reserves in India's energy sector and consequent power cuts have been in the news recently. India expects coal demand for the year ending March 2023 to be 784.6 million tonnes, up 3.3 per cent from earlier estimates. Reuters has seen a presentation by the Ministry of Power, which depicts the power crisis.

reports that local coal supply demand in India is expected to fall by 42.5 million tonnes in the September quarter, due to higher power demand growth and lower production from some mines than previously estimated. 15 percent more than This grim forecast reflects India's coal shortage at a time when annual electricity demand is growing at the fastest rate in at least 38 years. At the same time, global coal prices are trading at record levels due to supply crunch due to Russia-Ukraine crisis.

Coal import pressure increased

India has increased the pressure to increase coal imports in recent times. The government has warned the power plants of cutting domestic coal supply if they do not import coal. However, a presentation by the power ministry shows that most states are yet to award contracts for import of coal. If no one imported coal, there would be a shortage of coal in the July power plant.

Only one state awarded the contract

According to the import status report of the power ministry, till the end of April, only one state had awarded the contract for import of coal. India is expected to supply domestic coal of 154.7 million tonnes, which is 42.5 million tonnes less than the estimated requirement of 197.3 million tonnes in the September quarter. Earlier the shortfall in supply was expected to be only 37 million tonnes.

This exemption to power stations

Some measures have been announced in the past days to deal with the frequent shortage of coal in power stations. Last month, the power ministry allowed private power producers to enter into a deal for three years instead of ensuring one year's supply to deal with the crisis.