Natgrp: Issues are similar across most Discoms in the country
Improvement in energy efficiency could save the day for the state, said retired divisional engineer of APEPDCL, R V Ramana Rao, adding that inefficient transformers and capacitor banks were causing avoidable losses to discoms.
At a seminar organised by Visakhapatnam Apartment Residents’ Welfare Association (VARWA) on ‘State government power policy– Burdens-Alternatives’, he said that a majority of the transformers used by APEPDCL were inefficient as they face regular rewinding. “Every time a rewinding is undertaken, its energy efficiency reduces by 2-3%,” he said. “More than 25% of EPDCL transformers are adding to the losses,” he added. Rao also stated that majority of the capacitor banks in every substation were not working effectively.
“Discoms are projecting that they have 13 to 15% of transmission and distribution (T&D) losses. However, the loss is around 25 to 30%.” He said the discoms are showing part of it as T&D losses and the remaining is attributed to unmetered connections as the state government provides subsidy. However, he said that agriculture is invariably taking the blame for the losses due to the power shortage in the end. Advocating the need to reduce electricity consumption, Rao urged the public to contribute to the cause by using power judiciously.
Focusing on industries, Rao said most of the industries are using inefficient old equipment. Demanding that a mandatory energy audit be conducted to reduce losses due to inefficient equipment, he said even the public can save up to 15% by using energy efficient equipment and the power shortage wouldn’t be so severe.
Speaking on the occasion, former energy secretary to the Central government, E A S Sarma, said the state had sufficient power generating options to meet its demands but capacity shortage was due to the lack of a proper balance between hydel, thermal and gas-based power generating stations.
Pointing out that during the last 10-15 years, the state government had encouraged gas-based power projects at the cost of hydro-electric units, he said hydro and thermal sources of energy were key for the state.
However, during the last couple of years, the rising water shortage had led to reduction in power production from the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam. “The hydel project was designed keeping in mind requirements until April, but now it is unable to supply after December as the water is diverted to irrigation owing to political pressure,” he said.
Though the state had sufficient power generating options to meet the demand, it was lack of proper balance between hydel, thermal, gas-based power that is causing the shortage, said EAS Sarma.
Source: Times of India
- Loss-making discoms a drag on states’ finances, says RBI: Power Ministry has to act now (natgrp.org)
- Power tariffs to move in line with rising input cost: Power Ministry, Ball now in DISCOMs Court (natgrp.org)