Power minister RK Singh refutes any power crisis in India, says generation capacity greater than peak demand

India is not facing any power crisis as the installed electricity generation capacity stood at 395.6 gigawatts (GW) against the peak demand of 203 GW recorded in 2021-22, Parliament was informed.

“There is no power crisis in the country. As on February 28, 2022, the installed generation capacity is around 395.6 GW, which is sufficient to meet the demand of electricity in the country. The peak demand experienced during the current year was only 203 GW,” said Power Minister R K Singh in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha.

In another reply to the House, the minister told the House that as per the information compiled by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the import of coal reduced to 22.7 MT (million tonnes) during 2021-22 (April-January) as against 39 MT during the same period last year, mainly due to high imported coal price in the international market.

The shortfall in imported coal has been compensated through the enhanced supply of domestic coal i.e. from 442.6 MT during 2020-21 (April-January) to 547.2 MT during 2021-22 (April-January). Thus, he stated, that the generation loss due to the reduction in import of coal has been compensated from higher generation from domestic coal-based plants.

“We aim to achieve 500 GW installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based capacity (hydro, nuclear, solar, wind, biomass, etc.) by 2030. This will reduce the pressure on coal-based generation to a large extent,” he also told the House.

The reply showed that 938.36 billion units (BU) power is generated through coal-based thermal plants during April-February (2021-22) compared to 850.89 BU in the same period of 2020-21. The power generation from coal-based power plants stood at 950.93 BU (2020-21), 961.21 BU (2019-20) and 987.68 BU (2018-19). The power was generated at the total coal-based monitored capacity of 203.89 GW in the country. The minister told the House that there was a decrease in the coal-fired electricity produced in the country during the financial year 2020-21 as compared to the previous year 2019-2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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