Reduce power usage during peak hours to avoid cuts, Kerala says amid coal shortage
Kerala Power Minister K Krishnankutty said that the state electricity board is contemplating power cuts if the coal shortage situation in north India continues. The Minister said that the board is waiting and watching the developments and added that there was a shortage in supply from the central pool following the shortage of coal. With reports that the situation with regards to coal shortage in north India is likely to continue for a few more months, the state will need to study for how long the power cuts, if necessary, should be enforced.
While speaking to media persons at Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) chairman B Ashok said, "We are watching the day-to-day developments and if people reduce their consumption during the peak hours from 6 pm to 11 pm, then we could overcome the crisis. Presently three thermal plants that Kerala depends on are having shortage of power production and if it develops into other power producers, we will definitely have to go for a power cut."
He said that the daily allocation to the state from the central pool was 2,200 MW but for the past few days it has reduced considerably, thus leading the board to make some strong decisions.
Kerala, however, is relying more on hydroelectric power and with the state having a good monsoon, the need for a major power cut may not arise. However, with the central pool allocation for the state getting reduced, the government and the electricity board may need to go for short-term power cuts.
The state used to have daily power cuts for half an hour in earlier years when there was an unprecedented increase in power consumption. In 2013, this had gone up to an hour a day to meet the power requirements in the state. However, in the years afterward, there have hardly been power failures despite the state going through years of some of the worst floods in a century.
(With inputs from IANS)