The grid is back on the brink. A debilitating coal shortage, combined with severe strains on the transmission interconnections between the northern and western regions, has now forced grid managers to repeatedly issue drastic “warning notices” to states in the northern region to sharply lower drawals.
The Northern Region Load Despatch Centre (NRLDC) on August 28 flashed a warning that said: “High demand prevailing in NR (northern region) system/reduced availability. Please remain alert.”
This follows an earlier notice issued by the Northern Region Load Despatch Centre at 00:23 hrs on August 26 that warned that the actual transfer of electricity on the western region-
northern region corridor exceeding the rated capacity of 4,400 MW by well over 900 MW.
The situation has been precipitated by states such as Uttar Pradesh and Punjab overdrawing heavily to cope with shortages in overall thermal generation.
The western region, which has surplus power, has been facing shortages since Wednesday due to a sudden loss of over 7,600 MW of power generation capacities in Gujarat on account of the lack of coal availability and technical snags.
The power situation is worse this year on account of the tepid monsoon, which has resulted in less hydel generation and a sharp increase in agricultural load in the northern states.