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High-tension consumers in Tamil Nadu get a breather

M Ramesh Chennai | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on August 13, 2013

Increased generation from wind propels move to do away with power cuts during daytime

High tension power consumers in Tamil Nadu will not face any power cuts, except between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m.

During these peak hours, factories and commercial establishments were allowed to draw only 10 per cent of their allotted quota. This has now been increased to 60 per cent.

During the day, they were permitted to use only 60 per cent of the quota. Now, the restriction will not apply.

The move follows improvement in electricity generation in the State, mainly from wind power projects, according to a Tamil Nadu Government Order .

The lifting of these ‘restriction and control’ measures is a major relief for the Tamil Nadu industry, which has been reeling under severe power shortage, especially in the last couple of years.

Writ plea

The State Government’s order comes on the day when the Tamil Nadu Spinning Mills Association (TASMA) — whose members own about 3,000 MW of wind power capacity in the State — filed a writ petition with the Madras High Court against the state electricity generation and distribution, and transmission companies, and the state electricity regulatory commission.

The petition said that the utilities were not taking wind-generated electricity despite the transmission lines being available.

TASMA’s affidavit noted that the wind power generators in the state were losing 31 million units of generation on an average per day because the State utilities were not taking the power.

The Association wondered why the state was saying no to the cheaper wind power and buying costlier power from elsewhere. The state buys wind power at various rates, depending upon the vintage of the machine, but the highest price is Rs 3.51 per unit.

The affidavit also pointed out that the state electricity regulatory commission itself had classified windmills as ‘must-run’ plants and had directed the state load despatch centre not to curtail generation from wind projects.

In a related development, consequent to an order of the Madurai High Court on Tuesday, wind power producers who have dedicated transmission lines can now use those lines to transmit the power they produce.

Earlier, they were disallowed by the state-owned Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Company from using the dedicated lines.

>ramesh.m@thehindu.co.in

Published on August 13, 2013
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