New Delhi: Power deficit which was 8.5 percent in 2011-12 is one of the obstacles in the process of economic development and limits the ability of the economy to grow, Parliament was informed on Wednesday.
    
"The electricity requirement in the country during 2011-12 was 936,568  million units (MU) against which the availability was 857,239 MU resulting in deficit of 79,329 MU, which was 8.5 percent, Minister of State for Planning Ashwani Kumar said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.

The peak demand in 2011-12 was 130,250 megawatt (MW) against which peak met was 115,847 MW resulting in peak deficit of 14,403 MW, which was 11.1 percent, Kumar said.

Peak power deficit is the shortfall in generation capacity during the time when the electricity consumption is the maximum.
    
In a reply he said the country is facing fuel supply shortage of both coal and gas due to domestic supply constraints.
    
The country's coal demand in 2011-12 was 640 million tonnes against local production of 540 million, while import was at 90 million tonnes, he said.
    
The gas demand during the period was 194 million metric standard cubic metres per day (mmscmd) against which the domestic production was 130.26 mmscmd and import was 36.5 mmscmd (LNG).
    
Kumar said shortage of coal and gas was one of the reasons that have affected the electricity generation of thermal power plants.
    
He further said certain changes in basic pricing policies by Indonesia for export of coal to other countries including India have affected some power projects in the country.
    
With the increase in coal prices, developers have indicated difficulties in supplying electricity at the competitive bid tariff, he said.

However, the government has made plans to tap additional renewable energy sources to meet power deficit for maintaining growth rate of the economy.
     
During the 12th Plan (2012-17) a capacity addition of 30,000 MW of grid connected renewable power is proposed of which 15,000 MW is envisaged to come from wind power, 10,000 MW from solar capacity and 5,000 MW from other type of renewable sources, the minister added.

(Agencies)

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