Power- Performance, problems, Promises and Piyush Goel

Will the independent analysers evaluate the promises of Piyush Goel in right perspective?
A. Performance one year
1. 22,566 mega-watt (MW) of generation capacity was added in the last one year. 2. There has been the highest ever increase in transmission line capacity of 22,100 circuit km and highest ever increase in sub-station capacity of 66,554 MW.
3. Power deficit at 3.6 per cent in India is the lowest in its history.
4. Coal India Ltd produced a record 32 million tonnes of dry fuel and is looking at producing 100 million tonnes by 2020.
5. The price of LED bulbs have been brought down from Rs.310 last February (2014) to Rs.250 in September, Rs.149 in November, Rs.102 this February and finally Rs.81.3 in March—a decrease of 74%.

B. Problems
But there are some key concerns too:
1. State electricity boards, with a debt of Rs.3.04 trillion and losses of Rs.2.52 trillion, are on the brink of financial collapse.
2. Despite possessing 300 billion tonnes of coal reserves, India imports coal to meet its power requirements.
3. India’s per capita power consumption, about 940 kilowatt-hour (kWh), is among the lowest in the world—by comparison, China consumes 4,000 kWh per capita and rich nations average 15,000kWh per capita. India has an installed power generation capacity of 267,637 MW.
4. Electricity shortage continue to hamper export manufacturers. Over two-thirds of Indian exporters are small producers and are unable to benefit from alternatives such as having a captive power plant.

C. Promises
Based on the above achievement, what can one expect from the future plans of the Government:
1. Raising renewable energy capacity by more than five times to 175,000 MW by 2022, five ultra-mega power plants totalling 20,000 MW, reduction in peak load shortages through revival of stranded gas-based power plants, Rs. 1.09 lakh crore investment in sub-transmission and distribution and Rs. 1 lakh crore of new transmission projects to be bid out in the current year.
2. Clean energy will be prioritised with 25 solar parks of about 100 MW each planned and a Rs. 38,000 crore green energy corridor being set up to transmit renewable energy.
3. The government plans to increase India’s coal production to 1.5 billion tonnes by 2020, with Coal India Ltd (CIL) responsible for producing 1 billion tonnes, in a bid to do away with the need to import coal.
4. In the coming 3-4 years, if all households employ LEDs, we can save peak load in the amount of 27,000 MW. This will reduce 60 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emission per year.

Will by 2019 when the country will go for next general election, Indians will have trouble free 24×7 quality power supply?

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