The residuary State of Andhra Pradesh started its journey with a power deficit of 22.5 million units per day when it came in being after bifurcation in June 2014. Within a year, it transformed itself to a power surplus State. In the past 33 months, it has the distinction of achieving 100 per cent electrification to become third State in the country to achieve this. The transformation from a deficit situation, which was a lot more pronounced in Telangana after bifurcation, has come about with the State augmenting fresh capacities both conventional and renewable energy. On April 11, 2017, the State Grid managed to handle the demand of 7233 MW when the demand and supply was 169 mu per day. Gradually with the rabi season getting over, the requirement from the agriculture sector is coming down. This will free up some more power for consumption by other sectors.
Given the current demand supply situation and requirements, the State utilities are confident of meeting the increased demand during the summer months and claim they can meet the energy need of up to 200 mu per day. The State-owned energy generator AP Genco too managed to add capacity commissioning expansion and new project at Krishnapatnam.
More solar parks
The commissioning of wind and solar projects in the State and setting up of four more Solar Parks with a capacity of 1,000 MW each are expected to provide a major capacity boost by 2018-19. The State is on course to facilitating the setting up of 5,000 MW from wind energy by 2018-19. In the unified State, industries had to face up to three days of power holidays and rural consumers of up to 6 hours a day. Now they get 24×7 power supply, which is also playing a role in attracting industries to the State. Ajay Jain, Principal Secretary, Energy, Infrastructure, Andhra Pradesh, told BusinessLine, “The State has successfully implemented the ‘Power for All Scheme’, which entails 24×7 quality power supply to all categories except agriculture where it is supplied certain fixed hours. AP is the only State in the South which has joined a select group of States in the power surplus category.”
“We have capacity to supply up to 200 mu per day as there has been huge capacity addition in the State both under Genco, IPPs and in renewable energy sector. The situation has also transformed due to bringing down T&D losses from 14 per cent to 9.8 per cent,” Jain said. While AP State Grid managed to meet a peak demand of 7965 MW during August 2016, which was without any load restrictions, the energy consumption in the State has shot up from 138 mu during 2015-16 to 149 mu during 2016-17. The average consumption has further shot up to 178 mu during end of last fiscal and during the current fiscal. The situation also improved as the transmission and distribution losses have been brought down to single digit mark (below 10 per cent).
The State government is seeking to gear up to ensure renewable energy capacity of about 18,000 MW by 2022, which includes 10,000 MW of solar and 8000 MW of wind energy. According to K Vijayanand, MD AP Genco, CMD, AP Transco, “Discoms are ready to meet demand of up to 200 mu per day. Anticipating future requirements in the State and in the new capital city of Amaravati, fresh capacity is being developed with huge investments.”AP Genco is planning to develop additional power generation capacity of 11,670 MW over the next 10 years with an outlay of ₹84,000 crore. Suresh Chitturi, Past president, CII, AP, said, “There have been no complaints on the power supply side in AP. The government needs to be commended for such a scenario. This is in sharp contrast to what the industry was facing and suffering before the present dispensation took over. AP is in a very comfortable situation to handle massive growth in industrialisation.”
After the launch of the Centre’s Ujwal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY) to improve the financial situation of the State-owned power distribution companies in November 2015, AP was amongst the first to sign up for the scheme. As a part of this scheme, the State has taken over the ₹8,256 crore debt of Discoms. This is expected to improve the financial health of Discoms. Towards strengthening the power sector, the State has also initiated a number of energy efficiency measures as a part of the demand side management apart from bringing down T&D losses down to single digit.
It is proposed to replace inefficient agriculture pump sets (around 12 lakh) with energy efficient pumps and solar energy powered pump sets over the next three years. In tie up with EESL, the State distributed over 2 crore LED bulbs to the domestic households, around 5.5 lakh conventional street lights were replaced with LEDs, energy efficient fans were being distributed in the State to the households, all these indirectly contributing to the power surplus situation.