In order to add the projected 228.54 gigawatts (GW) of capacity by FY27, the Indian power sector will have to employ around 1.67 lakh professionals, with technical manpower accounting for the lion’s share.

The findings are part of the Central Electricity Authority’s (CEA) first volume of the draft National Electricity Plan (NEP). The authority pointed out that trained manpower is an essential prerequisite for the rapid development of all areas of the power sector.

Trained manpower includes skilled engineers, supervisors, managers, technicians, and operators. According to the report, the sector is poised for massive growth in generation and corresponding growth in transmission and distribution infrastructure.

“For a capacity addition of 228.54 GW considered in 2022–2027, the manpower requirement shall be of the order of 1,67,650 out of which 1,28,250 will be technical and 39,400 will be non-technical,” the CEA said in the draft NEP.

Similarly, for the 2027–32 period, the capacity addition requirement is 243.04 GW (including renewables of 224.91 GW), and the manpower requirement shall be of the order of 1,88,040 out of which 1,43,700 will be technical and 44,340 will be non-technical, it added.

Capacity addition

According to the CEA, the projected electricity requirement and peak power demand on an all-India basis are estimated at 1,874 billion units (BU) and 272 GW for FY27 and 2,538 BU and 363 GW for FY32, respectively.

The capacity addition required during 2022–27 to meet the peak demand and energy requirement is 228.54 GW, comprising 40.63 GW of conventional capacity addition—coal at 25.58 GW, gas at 370 MW, and nuclear at 7 GW.

The total renewable capacity required is 187.91 GW, including large hydro at 10.95 GW, solar at 132.08 GW, wind at 40.50 GW, biomass at 2.32 GW, and pumped storage plants at 2.7 GW.

Manpower training

The authority in the draft report have favoured training the workforce on renewable energy sources.

It is proposed that specialised training of at least 1-2 months should be given in various renewable energy technologies like solar, wind, biomass, small hydel, etc. Grid connectivity of RE sources may also be given importance in the training.

“In compliance with the National Training Policy (NTP) of the Ministry of Power, all organisations need to allocate a training budget at least equal to 5 per cent of the salary budget exclusively for funding training activities,” it has suggested.