Frantic calls are being made from Vidut Bhawan in Jaipur to the Union coal secretary in Delhi as the thermal power units in the state are being shut down one after another due to the ‘critical stock position’ of coal.
Indian power utilities imported around 23.2 million mt of thermal coal over April-August, down 20% year on year, according to latest Central Electricity Authority data seen by S&P Global Platts Wednesday.
Coal Minister Piyush Goyal today said his ministry is taking urgent steps to ensure coal supplies to power stations stabilise by month end or early October.
Coal India will ask power plants at short distances from coal mines to use trucks so that railway rakes are available for plants further away.
During the month of August 2017 as the country was reeling under energy crunch with growth in hydro, nuclear and others sources plunging down by 12%, 36% and 7% respectively, the demand for electricity from thermal power plants went up substantially, which, in fact generated 17% more power compared to August 2016.
Coal stock in Tamil Nadu has dwindled further in the last one week. While there was stock to run power plants for seven days a week ago, it has fallen to six days’ stock now.
Coal import in August declined 24 per cent on a yearly basis as Indian buyers preferred not to buy any fresh fossil fuel and instead wait and watch ahead of an upcoming auction for the power sector.
Secretary, Ministry of Coal Susheel Kumar reviewed the coal supply position to the Thermal Power Plants in the country. The meeting was attended by CMD CIL and all the CMDs of the subsidiary companies of CIL.
Coal stocks at thermal power plants across the country have dropped to alarmingly low levels. Private power companies are the worst-hit, as state-run NTPC, under government patronage, is getting out-of-turn supplies.
Goyal’s elevation is no surprise as he has been considered for long amongst the top achievers in the Modi Cabinet. Goyal at 52 is one of the youngest ministers in the Modi government and was made the minister of state for the first time in 2014. Today in 2017, within three years, Goyal has become the full-fledged Cabinet minister in Modi’s council of ministers.
Rewarded for his hard work, Piyush Goyal, holding charge of four important ministries (Power, Coal, Renewable Energy and Mines) as the minister of state with Independent Charge, has been elevated to the rank of a full-fledged cabinet minister in the reshuffle by Narendra Modi government on Sunday morning.