New Delhi: India’s power sector is transforming in terms of reliability and affordability, according to Steve Bolze, president and chief executive officer of GE Power, the power generation division of US-based General Electric.

“It’s an incredibly dynamic time in the power market right now. Everyone in the world needs more affordable, more accessible, reliable and sustainable power. About 13% of the new power generation orders in the world are going to India. India is a major source of what is happening. It is fairly diversified from new steam to gas turbine to one of the biggest single renewable players in the world," Bolze told a conference on the future of electricity organized by Mint and General Electric Co. on Tuesday.

Bolze stated that he has been connected with the power business in India for 22 years, adding, “India is transforming—in terms of reliability of the grid, in terms of COP 21 (Conference of the Parties or the Paris climate conference) leadership and in terms of affordability."

The GE Power president stressed five key areas for technology adoption—supply side efficiency, mainstreaming renewables, gas (based power), digital and energy access.

“The number one area of new power generation growth in the world is just to get more out of installed power that exists on the ground today. That is the best return for most customers and the quickest. There is a big opportunity to improve efficiency of existing installed base. That’s more megawatt for the same amount of fuel," said Bolze.

As per an International Energy Agency report, India’s installed capacity will surge from 290 gigawatt (GW) at present to nearly 1,100 GW in 2040—which is about the same as Europe’s current capacity. Nearly half of the net increase in coal-fired generation capacity worldwide would occur in India, where coal is set to remain a key source of power.

Thus higher efficiency of coal-fired power plants becomes critical. Bolze highlighted digital technology as one of the most exciting areas in the transformation of the power market, not just in India but across the world.

“This probably will have the single biggest transformational impact on India as well as the world power (market) in the next 20 years. This is all about getting more out of the existing installed base of power by tapping into physical assets and the information that exists on them, by pulling that data and analysing how we can perform better, improve efficiency," he added.

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