Punjab saw a 33% increase in electricity demand in April (between April 1 and April 28) this year, compared to the same period last year, the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL ) claiming to have satisfied the request at point. .
Data obtained by The Indian Express showed that from April 1 to April 28, PSPCL supplied a total of 34,109 lakh units (LU) of electricity last year. During the same period this year, the figure reached 45,220 lakh units, a jump of 33%.
According to the PSPCL authorities, they were able to meet all the demand between April 1 and 25, and a gap of 800 to 1,000 MW between demand and supply was only recorded between April 26 and April 25. April 29, because two thermal units broke down. Unplanned power cuts and restrictions on the industry have only been imposed these days, they claimed.
“The whole month of April witnessed an erratic power supply for all sectors. Previously, there were maintenance cuts in many settlements before the paddy season. This was followed by local rifts and unplanned outages, which sparked protests from residents in both urban and rural areas. So one can very well imagine the actual demand versus what has been provided,” said Gurlabh Singh Mahal, a lawyer based in Mansa.
According to the data, the one-day peak demand peaked at 8971 MW, which was observed on April 28 and met by PSPCL. On April 28 last year, peak demand had reached 6,365 MW, PSPCL data showed.
The minimum demand observed in April was on the fifth day of the month when only 6365 MW of electricity was to be supplied. On the same day last year, 5477 MW of electricity was supplied.
The data also showed that in April this year, demand was below 7,000 MW for only 5 days – from April 2 to April 5. Since April 25, demand has exceeded the 8,000 MW figure daily. After imposing unscheduled power outages and maintenance shutdowns, daily electricity demand in the state was 8,150 MW on April 25, 8,521 MW on April 26, 8,742 MW on April 27, and 8,971 MW on April 28. . Sources revealed that the gap between demand and supply between April 27 and April 29 was around 2,000 MW.
Compared to this, in April 2021, the total electricity demand in the state had remained below 6,000 MW for 21 days. For 9 days last year, demand exceeded 6000 MW but never exceeded the 6365 MW mark.
PSPCL, while giving figures on electricity demand in lakh units per day between April 1 and April 28, said it delivered peak power on April 28 at 1,742 lakh units, compared to 1,388 units. lakh supplied on the same day last year. As of April 3, it had supplied only 1,444 lakh units of electricity compared to 1,213 lakh units on the same day last year.
According to power department officials, the lack of rainfall in April this year and the heat wave conditions across the country have increased the demand for electricity in the state this year. This problem was compounded by a shortage of coal supply, no addition of generation capacity by Punjab and the state closing an 880 MW thermal power station at Bathinda and two units of the Ropar thermal power station being out of service.
In addition to resorting to unscheduled power cuts, PSPCL has so far appealed to induction arc furnaces to voluntarily shut down their units from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Fridays, successfully saving around 600 MW. On April 30, an appeal was also launched. issued by the electricity company to all industrial units in the state, except Ludhiana, to voluntarily close their factories.