Coal Shortage in Thermal Power Plants in India : Everything You Need to Know About the Power Crisis in India

Many states including Delhi, Rajasthan, Punjab and Andhra Pradesh, have warn of blackouts in many cities due to a shortage of coal in thermal power plants across the country.

Central government has assure that India has adequate coal stocks but it is not clear how long the situation will last and how it might affect other sectors in India as the festive season begins in the country.

Everything You Need to Know About the Power Crisis in India.

India fourth-largest coal reserves in the world is heavily relies on thermal power plants to meet its energy demands.

As it is also the world’s second-largest importer of coal and imports fuel from Australia, South Africa and Indonesia.

As per Central Electricity Authority (CEA), over half of India’s 135 coal-fired power plants, which in total supply around 70% of the nation’s electricity were left with an average of just four days of coal stocks by the end of September.

This is a cause of worry as the festive season is underway in India and it might lead to an increase in the demand.

Why India is facing a shortage of coal?

There has been an increase in the demand for electricity as the Indian economy recovers from the impact of the COVID-19 crisis.

As per a report in August 2021 India consumed 124 billion units of power compare to 106 billion units last year.

Other factor is the continuous rains in coal mine areas during September.

Union Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi Said to PTI :

“If you compare with the past many years, coal production and dispatch have been the highest in September and especially in October. In another three to four days, things will be alright”

The increase in prices of import coal to an unprecedented high level leading to a substantial reduction in power generation from import coal-based power plants, and non-building of adequate coal stocks before the onset of Monsoon are another reason behind the shortage of coal.

What the Government Said?

Many state governments and power suppliers have warn of blackouts due to low coal supply, Union Coal Ministry said that India has adequate fuel stocks and “low inventory doesn’t mean generation will stop as stock is being continuously replenished”.

Union Coal Ministry also said that the stocks being report by power plants is a rolling stock, which means stocks are being replenished on a day by day basis.

Union Power Ministry Said in a Statement :

“Core Management Team (CMT) set up Power Ministry is closely monitoring and managing coal stocks on daily basis and ensuring follow up actions with Coal India Limited, Railways to improve the coal supply to power plants,”.

“Ministry of Coal and Coal India Limited have assured that they’re making best efforts to increase dispatch to power sector to 1.6 MT/day in next 3 days and try to touch 1.7 MT/day. It’s likely to help in gradual build up of coal stocks at power plants in near future,”.

Coal Crisis Situation to Normalise in 3-4 days : Union Minister Pralhad Joshi

Union minister said that he has come to know that the Delhi Chief Minister has written a letter and he will give a statement on it only after taking detailed information.

Union Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi on Saturday assure that the situation will normalise in the next three-four days.

The Union minister notes that despite adverse circumstances, the country records the highest coal production in October.

Union Minister Pralhad Joshi make sure that the price of coal in the international market has suddenly risen sharply, which results in a reduction in import.

While on the other hand heavy rains affected the domestic coal production significantly.

Pralhad Joshi was reacting to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking the later’s intervention in resolving the coal crisis.

The Union Minister Pralhad Joshi that he has come to know that the Delhi Chief Minister has written a letter and he will give a statement on it only after taking detailed information.

Kejriwal wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the prevailing coal shortage situation that has struck the national capital for the third month in a row, affecting power generation in the city.


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