Electricity Generation Scenario in India, By Kartikeya Hundet, At LexCliq

Electricity production, generation and transmission is among the most critical component of infrastructure and also crucial for the economic growth and welfare of nations. The existence and development of adequate infrastructure is essential for sustained growth of the Indian economy. Such a growth would depend heavily on the availability of electricity to propel around industrial, agricultural and commercial activity. In recent years, India’s energy consumption has increased at a relatively higher rate due to population growth, economic development, even though the base rate may be somewhat low as compare to other developing country in the world. The Electricity is one of the forms of energy, which is necessary requirement for the growth and development of the world in today’s industrial era. The electricity productions rate has increased, as its demand increase day by day due to the increasing population and technologies that are dependent on electricity. This has also led to the urge of establishing more economically reasonable power plants system with good performance and enhanced efficiency.

The traditional electrical power system has been planned, designed and operated in a manner wherein the central power generating stations supply power to distribution networks over long distances, in a radial manner. The evolution of the traditional system to a smart grid has brought about a dramatic change with smaller decentralized generators being used to support the power distribution system. The demand for energy grows at a faster rate than the expansion of power generation and transmission requiring concrete measures to meet the operational efficiency and grid reliability.

In India, coal is the dominant domestic fossil fuel resource in the country, and policy-makers and planners have traditionally considered coal to be an important source of the nation’s energy future, especially in relation to the economics of the other alternatives such as Natural gas, LNG, Nuclear resource or advanced renewables. However, the increased use of coal in power generation also has negative impacts. In addition to the environmental and social consequences of coal mining, coal-based power generation contributes significantly to local and regional air pollution through the emission of particulates, Sulphur and nitrogen oxides in stack flue gases, and water pollution through the release of waste heat and effluents.

Legal regulation of electricity generation in India:

The legislative framework relating to the electricity sector in India is provided by the Electricity Act, 2003, which governs the generation, transmission, distribution and trading of electricity, including the tariff for sale of electricity.

The institutional framework under the Electricity Act, 2003, comprises electricity regulatory commissions at the central and state levels, with appeal provision provided to an Appellate Tribunal for Electricity (APTEL) which has been created under the Electricity Act, and from APTEL appeal to the Supreme Court of India.

The Government of India has initiated several reform measures to create a favorable environment for the addition of new generating capacity in the country. The Electricity Act 2003 has put in place a highly liberal framework for a generation. There is no requirement of licensing for a generation. The requirement of techno-economic clearance of CEA for thermal generation project is no longer there. For hydroelectric generation also, the limit of capital expenditure, above which concurrence of CEA is required, would be raised suitably from the present level. The captive generation has been freed from all controls.

The progress of implementation of capacity addition plans and growth of demand would need to be constantly monitored and necessary adjustments made from time to time. In creating new generation capacities, appropriate technology may be considered keeping in view the likely widening of the difference between peak demand and the baseload.

 

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