Peak power deficit is the shortage in electricity supply when demand is at its highest. As per latest data by the Central Electricity Authority, peak electricity shortfall in December was 3.3 percent as against 4.2 percent in the same month of 2013.

The total power demand of the country during December 2014 was 1,39,479 MW, of which 1,34,940 MW was met leaving a shortfall of 4,539 MW.

"Double-digit increase in coal production during the last quarter (October-December) is one of the important reasons for increase in thermal power generation, last month," Debashish Mishra Senior Director (Consulting) Deloitte India said.

Domestic coal production grew by 14.1 percent during the quarter in 2014, as against 1 percent in the year-ago period, an official data said.

A Power Ministry official said: "The primary reason for some improvement in the peak power deficit year-on-year is commissioning of new power projects which have added to the installed generation capacity and synchronisation of the southern grid with the National Grid."
Southern transmission grid was synchronised with the National Grid in January last year. The region's peak power deficit increased during December 2014 to 4.3 percent from 3.7 percent in December 2013.

“This may be due to increase in power demand from the region," the official added. Peak power demand in the southern region states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala, Puducherry and Lakshadweep last month was 35,668 MW of which 1,531 MW was was the deficit.

The region's demand in the same period last year was 34,816 MW of which 1,275 MW was the shortfall, the data said.North Indian states of Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan recorded a shortage of 5.3 percent in December, last year. This is an improvement from previous year's 7.1 percent.
The electricity demand of the western region comprising Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Goa was nearly met in December 2014 as the region's peak power deficit came down to 0.4 percent from last year's 2.5 percent in the same month.

The peak power shortage in eastern India (West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha etc) remained almost the same at 1.7 percent as compared to 1.5 percent in the same month, last year. However, the Northeastern states saw a sharp rise in peak power deficit last month at 11.8 percent from 5.9 percent in December 2013, CEA data said.

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