Delhi’s power demand soars as temperature hits new high

  • Theupward trend in power demand is due to the increasing use of cooling appliances.

Rituraj Baruah
First Published29 May 2024
On Wednesday, the peak demand in Delhi hit the highest-ever recorded in the city.
On Wednesday, the peak demand in Delhi hit the highest-ever recorded in the city.

New Delhi: At 1.36 pm on Wednesday, the peak power demand in Delhi hit 8,302 MW, the highest-ever recorded in the city, according to data from the State Load Dispatch Centre. The previous record of 8,000 MW was registered just last week.

Power demand zoomed as temperatures in parts of the National Capital Region soared to record levels, causing a spike in the use of cooling devices. 

On Wednesday, the weather station at Mungeshpur in north-west Delhi, recorded a temperature of 52.9 degrees, again the highest-ever in NCR. 

The average temperature in Delhi was 45.8 degrees on Wednesday but it felt like nearly 50 degrees celsius across the city, according to IMD, before a short squall brought some relief.

June to be hotter

However, people in heatwave-affected areas of northwest and central India may get some respite with IMD projecting easing temperatures starting 30 May. The relief, however may be short-lived as the weather department also projects June to be hotter and more humid than May across most parts of India, especially northwest and central regions.

Across the country too, peak demand has been increasing and is nearing the 240 GW-level. Peak demand on Tuesday stood at 237.9 GW, the highest so far in FY25.

Read | India records over 16,000 heatstroke cases, 60 deaths since 1 March

Commenting on the peak demand in the national capital, a BSES spokesperson said: "BRPL and BYPL successfully met the peak power demand of 3643 MW and 1947 MW in their respective areas." 

BSES Rajdhani Power Ltd (BRPL) and BSES Yamuna Power Ltd (BYPL) are joint ventures between Reliance Infrastructure and the government of Delhi.

Sharp power demand surge in Delhi

Noting that the persistent heatwave across north India is leading to a sharp demand surge for electricity in the national capital, a spokesperson with Tata Power-Delhi Distribution Ltd (DDL) said: "The peak power demand in Delhi hit a new record of 8,302 MW. At Tata Power-DDL's end, we successfully met our highest-ever peak power demand of 2,339 MW and have made sufficient arrangements to meet the demand."

Meanwhile, the power ministry has taken a number of steps to ensure uninterrupted power suppy, including directing power generation companies to blend 6% imported coal till June. However, parts of NCR such as Ghaziabad and Greater Noida along with several other parts of the country have witnessed power outages over the past week.

With increasing consumption of coal, stocks of the fuel at thermal power plants have been declining, although not to concerning levels. Stocks available at plants currently are adequate to keep these plants going for 16 days, compared to 19 days last month.

Coal-fired plants currently have 47.83 million tonnes of coal in stock. In a recent interview with Mint, secretary to the union ministry of coal Amrit Lal Meena said the government's target is to have at least 40 million tonnes of coal at the plants by the end of June.

Also read | India's peak demand hits 235 GW, power generation up 10% in April

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