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Electrical energy requirement is expected to grow by 37% in five years, according to the 19th electric power survey (EPS) report released by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA). The country needs 1,566 billion units (BUs) of energy in FY22, the report said.
Energy requirement in FY17 was close to 1,143 BU, reflecting an annual growth of 2.6%. According to the 18th EPS published in 2011, energy requirement in FY17 was expected to be 1,355 BU.
The electrical energy requirement on an all-India basis during FY27, FY32 and FY37 has been assessed as 2,047 BU, 2,531 BU and 3,049 BU, respectively. The report also added that the expected peak demand in FY22 would be 226 GW. However, it may be noted that the previous EPS had seen a peak demand in FY17 at 199.5 GW, 25% lower than the actual peak demand in the same period. The current installed power generating capacity in the country is nearly 329.3 GW.
The peak electricity demand has been estimated as 226 GW, 299 GW, 370 GW and 448 GW during FY22, FY27, FY32 and FY37, respectively.
Speculations of an additional requirement can come as a ray of hope for the power industry, which is currently mired in a low-demand scenario. This has led to power plants operating at low plant load factors (PLFs) which makes it difficult to service debts. The average PLF for thermal power plants across the country was 59.8% in FY17. PLF for private sector plants was 55.7%. About 33,000 MW of coal-based power plants currently do not have long-term power purchase agreements. Out of this, more than 18,000 MW are already commissioned.
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