Solar power led the growth in generation grew thanks to higher capacity.
In June 2018, India’s total renewable generation rose 25.5% YoY to 12.8 billion units, driven by an increase in solar and wind power generation, India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra) revealed.
“Solar power generation increased on account of higher capacity. On the other hand, improved wind capacity PLFs were due to improved wind speed,” said Ind-Ra analyst Bhanu Patni.
Higher power demand was met through higher electricity generation (excluding that from renewable sources), which increased 4.5% YoY to 102.3 billion units in July 2018. Generation across all sources rose, including thermal (4.8%), hydro (2.4%), and nuclear (14.5%). Thermal plant load factor (PLF) also improved to 55.5% in July 2018 from 53.7% in July 2017.
The monthly coal production of Coal India Limited increased 10.9% YoY to 40.6 million tonnes in July 2018, supporting thermal generation growth. “However, coal inventory at power stations remained low on a year-on-year basis owing to higher coal consumption due to higher PLFs of coal-based power stations,” Patni added.
The number of power stations with critical and supercritical levels declined to 11 in July 2018 from 15 in June 2018, albeit was higher compared with two in July 2017.
Short-term power prices declined to INR3.46/kWh in July 2018 from INR3.73/kWh in June 2018 owing to a reduction in power demand with the onset of monsoon. The volumes traded at the Indian Energy Exchange declined 19.0% to 4,028 million units in July 2018 from 4,965 million units in June 2018.
“However, the prices remained high compared with INR2.49/kWh in July 2017 owing to an increase in demand and variable cost of generation due to a rise in imported coal prices,” the analyst added.
In July, all-India energy requirements increased 7.4% YoY to 110.3 billion units and available energy increased 7.5% YoY to 109.7 billion units, leaving a power deficit of 0.5% in July 2018 (July 2017: 0.6%).
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