Enough coal for thermal power plants: Government

coal, thermal, thermal power plant, Piyush Goyal, Modi government, India

New Delhi, April 29, 2016: At present, there is no shortage of coal in the thermal power plants of the country.

None of the Coal based power generation plants across the country have reported any loss of generation due to shortage of coal during 2015-16. This was stated by Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal & New and Renewable Energy in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha today.

The Minister further stated that at present, as on 21st April, 2016, coal stock a thermal power plants has been reported to be more than 37 Million Tonne (MT) by power utilities which is sufficient for operation of power plants for about 25 days. Further, none of the power plants have reported critical / super critical coal stock position.

At present, there is some deficit in availability of domestic gas. Due to Government initiative, the scheme of utilisation of RLNG (Regassified Liquefied Natural Gas) helped in improving the generation from gas based power stations. During 2015-16, the growth of generation from gas based power station was 14.6% over the same period last year. Enhanced availability of domestic coal has offset shortage of gas and has resulted in growth in overall thermal generation from coal & gas based power plants to 7.4 % during the year 2015-16 as well as reduction of 10.6 MT import of coal by power sector.

The steps being taken by the Government to ensure uninterrupted supply of fuel to the thermal power plants, inter-alia, are:

1) Multi-dimensional efforts are underway by Coal India Ltd. (CIL) to enhance production of domestic coal. A road map has been prepared by CIL to substantially enhance coal production level to one Billion Tonne by the year 2019-20 to meet the coal requirement.

2) Coal blocks have been allotted to central/ state power utilities to improve domestic coal availability.

3) The availability of coal is being regularly monitored closely at the highest level in the Government so that generation of power plants is not affected due to shortage of coal.

4) Government of India has sanctioned a scheme for utilization of gas based power generation capacity for the years 2015-16 and 2016-17. The scheme envisages supply of imported spot RLNG (Regassified Liquefied Natural Gas) to the stranded gas based plants as well as plants receiving domestic gas at subsidized rates, selected through a reverse e-biding process.