Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Rain eases power crisis

Rain eases power crisis
DH News Service, Bangalore:
The heavy rain lashing several parts of the State over the last two-three days has had officials in the energy department heaving a sigh of relief.

Besides a sharp fall in the daily power demand by about 30 million units, there has been a marked increase in inflow of water into the hydel reservoirs.

The heavy rain has hit normal life in coastal and Malnad regions. Several areas in Uttara Kannada, Shimoga, Udupi, Dakshina Kannada, Chikmagalur, Hassan and Kodagu districts have been inundated.

Pilgrim centres Bhagamandala (Kodagu) and Kukke Subramanya (Dakshina Kannada) are among the worst hit. KSRTC services to Kukke Subramanya have been been disrupted. Power supply across Kodagu district has also been badly affected.

One killed
A tree fell over a bus belonging to the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation at Vatekolli near Perumbadi gate in Kodagu district early on Monday morning, killing the driver of the bus, Praveen (27), on the spot.

If heavy rain continues to lash the State for another 15 to 20 days, then power situation will remain normal for the next 10 months in the State. Karnataka Power Corporation Limited Managing Director S M Jaamdar said the demand for power has come down to 75 MUs a day from the peak 110-115 MUs. In Bangalore, there was no load-shedding through the day.

The State has also cut down its power purchase by 20 MUs a day saving money for the exchequer. A unit of power if purchased from outside Karnataka costs not less than Rs 8 a unit, whereas the production by KPCL costs around Rs 2.50 a unit.

Jaamdar said, “I cannot say the power position is satisfactory. But we have sufficient water to meet the immediate requirement. If it rains for the next eight days the way it has been for 2-3 days now, then we can expect good progress in power generation. The water level in the Linganamakki reservoir has gone up by 5 feet compared to last week. The inflow into the reservoir last week was about 9,000 cusec while this morning it was 58,000 cusec. If the rains continue in the Sharavathi catchment area, then we will be comfortable. It is also raining in the Supa and Mani reservoir areas. In September too we expect good rains.”

Consequent to the rains, the demand for power has come down by 30 to 35 MUs a day.

The demand from IP sets alone has reduced by 30 per cent. With the Bellary thermal plant producing up to 150 MW, the dependence on the Raichur thermal plant has come down. In fact, a unit in Raichur has been shut down for annual maintenance, he added.

K Jairaj, Principal Secretary, Energy Department said with the stability in power availability, there has been no load-shedding from Sunday.

However, he said, “We have not withdrawn load-shedding. The Cabinet sub-committee on power will meet on Tuesday to review the situation.”


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