G.K. Nair

Kochi, April 15

THE power situation in Kerala the State is likely to be good this year as the water storage in all reservoirs of the hydel projects in the State is sufficient to generate the power required till the onset of the South-west monsoon in early June.

With the water available as on April 15 in the reservoirs 1,058 million units (mu) could be generated and that would be sufficient till the onset of monsoon, a senior KSEB source told Business Line on Friday.

He said that in the first fortnight of April alone, there was a good inflow of water from the recent summer showers enough to generate 61 mu as against the anticipated inflow needed to generate 81 mu.

The weather conditions so far had been favourable and it is expected that there would be a good monsoon this year and it would arrive in time, he said.

The daily power demand at present is 35.8 mu and of this 13.3 mu are generated by the hydel projects of the KSEB. From the central grid 20.77 mu are drawn daily and the balance is met from the board's diesel power plants, he said.

Thus, this year also, the board would be able to meet the power requirement without drawing it from the thermal stations of NTPC at Kayamkulam and BSES near here, he pointed out.

According to him, Kerala could manage its power system without the support of Kayamkulam Thermal station. He said the power consumption in the State has not grown recently as expected earlier, mainly due to the stagnation in industrial consumption.

The load pattern of the State power system is such that the maximum load occurs during 6 p.m. and 10 p.m., which comes to be around 2350 MW during an acute summer. The minimum load occurs during late night hours i.e., between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m., which comes to be around 1000 MW during summer.

In other words the base load of Kerala Power System is around 1000 MW. The Central share of Kerala is between 750 MW and 800 MW now, which is available round-the-clock.

The base load of 1000 MW as well as day-time-additional load of around 350 MW can be met with the minimum hydro generation that is to be put on grid and with the support of the board's own small thermal stations whenever there is a hydel shortage, he said.

The hydel stations could generate around 1,200 MW throughout the year while the KSEB diesel generating plants at Brahmapuram and Kozhikode 150 MW, he said. The Central share would come to 800 MW. Thus the total power availability comes to around 2150 MW leaving a shortage of 200 MW during the evening peak hours, he claimed.

Any short fall in the supply could be met by drawing additional power from the CGS, he said. The pooled cost of the power from the grid is around Rs 1.5 a unit. He said that availability from the CGS would depend on the generation of power at Ramagundam and Neyveli stations.

Similarly, the cost would also differ between these two stations, he said.

According to the official, the peak demand for power in the State begins from December.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated April 16, 2005)
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