In three years down the line, will it be a problem of plenty for the two Telugu-speaking States with regard to the power sector?
From acute shortage of power experienced post-bifurcation, both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh have turned power-surplus within two years of their inception, thanks to the proactive policies of the State governments.
But given their ambitious plans for capacity addition through conventional means as well as renewable sources, the two States will soon be compelled to explore options for effectively managing their surplus power failing which it could impact the finances and operations of the distribution companies as well as consumer tariffs, Prayas (Energy) Group said in its report.
The report elaborating on the experiences of power surplus States, including Gujarat, Maharashtra, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and Haryana, said A.P. and Telangana only have marginal surplus capacity which can be managed in the current context. But with the large scale capacity addition planned and anticipated drop in the future demand, the surplus could become as significant as in the case of Gujarat or Maharashtra.
Explaining about the energy availability of A.P. and Telangana, the report said A.P. Discoms relied on short term power procurement in spite of being surplus with purchase of 7,041 million units at ₹ 5.16/kWh for 2015-16 and the quantum was pegged at 1,193 MU for 2016-17.
Telangana Discoms, on their part, estimated only a marginal loss of 2.41 per cent of the total availability of thermal stations due to backing down in 2016-17, of which, 62 per cent could be attributed to backing down of high cost AP power plants. The expected short term power procurement by Telangana utilities during the previous financial year was 7,361 MU at Rs. 5.31/kWh which was higher than the rate approved by the State regulator to meet about 15 per cent of its requirement.
The power utilities of A.P. planned to add another 7,623 MW non-renewable energy by 2021-22 while their Telangana counterparts expect an additional 11,240 MW both the States have firmed up plans to add another during the same period.