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Wednesday, October 13, 2021

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Infraline Comprehensive Power , Oil & Gas & Coal Only Detailed Newsletter

What’s New

Acts and Regulations

§  Order on Approval under Regulation 86 of the CERC (CoB) Regs, 1999 and truing up of transmission tariff of the 2014-19 tariff period under the CERC (T&Cs of Tariff) Regs, 2014 and determination of transmission tariff for the 2019-24 tariff period under the CERC (T&Cs of Tariff) Regs, 2019 for 7 assets under the Eastern Region Strengthening Scheme VIII in the Eastern Region. PGCIL

§  Order on determination of transmission tariff of 2019-24 period under the CERC (T&Cs of Tariff) Regs, 2019 in respect of transmission assets (a) Neelamangala-Somanahally 400 kV D/C line along with bays; and (b) Gooty-Raichur 400 kV D/C transmission line with bays under System Strengthening-III in Southern Region. PGCIL

§  Order on Petition for revision of tariff of Ramagundam Super Thermal Power Station Stage-III (500 MW) for the period from 1.4.2014 to 31.3.2019 after truing-up exercise NTPC Limited

§  Order on determination of transmission tariff of 2019-24 period under CERC (T&Cs of Tariff) Regs, 2019 of Transmission lines connecting between Uttarakhand and neighbouring UP (Natural Inter State Transmission Lines) pertaining to HPPTCL namely, 1) 220 kV S/C Jassure- Ranjitsagar TL 2) 220 kV D/C Majri- Khodri TL 3) 220 kV D/C Kunihar- Panchkula TL.HPPTCL

§  Order on Petition under Section 79 of the EAt read with Article 13 of the PPA dated 22.04.2007 seeking appropriate directions from this Commission for adequately compensating CGPL (by adjustment in tariff or by prescribing any other appropriate compensatory mechanism) on account of increased transportation cost of fuel due to occurrence of Change in Law events. CGPL

View More...

Performance of State Discom

New!

Power

PMO reviews coal supply, power availability situation

The shortage of coal -- which makes up around 70 per cent of India's electricity mix -- has forced rotational power cuts in states from Rajasthan to Kerala.

India working on an ‘Energy Storage’ policy

India plans to have 175GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 and 450GW by 2030. This huge injection of electricity in the grid from sources such as solar and wind requires a storage mechanism that can help balance the national electricity grid

§  View: Solar installation surge puts India on track to cap coal-fired power as early as 2024

§  Power cuts in Rajasthan amid coal shortage: official

§  India’s solar power capacityneeds to increase, says study

§  Punjab may take electricity supply from Tata Power's Mundra plant: Report

§  Minister says Maharashtra facing 4,000 MW power shortage, blames Coal India for fuel supply crunch

§  India orders power firms to boost supply to Delhi

§  India allows power plants to blend imported coal with local grade

§  Will Budgetary Support to promote Hydro Electric (HE) Power encourage DISCOMS to purchase power from HEPs?

[Poll Question]

Projects Update

Project Name

Promoter

Capacity

State

Dardu Hydro Power Project

KVK-ECI Hydro Energy Private Limited

60 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Tidding II Hydro Power Project

Sai Krishnodaya Industries Pvt. Ltd.

75 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Jameri Hydro Power Project

KSK Jameri Hydro Power Pvt. Ltd.

60 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Attunli Hydro Power Project

Attunli Hydro Electric Power Company

680 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Kolodyne Hydro Power Project Stage-2

NTPC

460 MW

Mizoram

Renewable Energy

 

India working on an ‘Energy Storage’ policy

India plans to have 175GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 and 450GW by 2030. This huge injection of electricity in the grid from sources such as solar and wind requires a storage mechanism that can help balance the national electricity grid

View: Solar installation surge puts India on track to cap coal-fired power as early as 2024

If India keeps installing solar capacity at the rate it's achieved for the last three months, coal-fired power could peak in the 2023-24 Financial Year, and increased solar generation alone could meet the country's growing electricity requirements in subsequent years.

§  India’s solar power capacityneeds to increase, says study

§  India needs 5630 GW installed solar capacity to become net-zero nation by 2070: Report

§  MYSUN bags 140-MW solar power projects in UP

§  Reliance New Energy Solar to invest in NexWafe as strategic lead investor

§  Tata Power Solar bags order of ₹538 cr from EESL

§  Central Electronics Limited tenders 147 MW of decentralized solar in Maharashtra

§  Tata Power Solar to Set Up 100 MW Solar Projects in Maharashtra

§  Does Anti-Dumping probe benefit Domestic Solar Manufacturers in India?[Poll Question]

Projects Update

Project Name

Plant Owner

Capacity (MW)

State

Adani Chitrakoot One Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Chitrakoot One

25

Adani Kutchh One Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Kutchh One Limited

150

Gujarat

Shahjahanpur and Budaun Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Four Private Ltd

100

Uttar Pradesh

1200 MW ISTS Connected Projects (ISTS-V)

SBE Renewables Sixteen Pvt. Ltd.

180

Rajasthan

1200 MW ISTS Connected Projects (ISTS-V)

GRT Jewellers (India) Pvt. Ltd.

150

Tamil Nadu

Oil & Gas

 

Only 3 bidders for 21 oil, gas blocks; Vedanta, Reliance stay away

The government has been hoping that opening up of more acreage for exploration will help boost India's oil and gas production

Extraction of natural gas and oil not mining activity, experts call this move of NBWL regressive

In a move that may have wider implications, the national board for wildlife (NBWL) — an apex body that takes calls on conservation issues — has decided not to treat extraction of natural gas or oil as a mining activity under existing law on mines & minerals regulation in green areas.

§  Do you think Natural gas, diesel and petrol should have been included under GST?

[Poll Question]

§  India Must Look to Russia for a Mutually Beneficial Energy Partnership

§  INTERVIEW: Petroleum products unlikely to gain from India's coal woes, says FIPI

§  OIL discovers natural gas in EKH’s Dangar

§  Green body not to treat gas and oil extraction as mining activity

§  Govt says volatile crude oil prices pose concerns for economy

§  Petrol, diesel price rise pause after a week of increase

Oil & Gas Technical

New!

 

Chesapeake Energy names new President and CEO

Chesapeake Energy Corporation announced that its Board of Directors has unanimously voted to appoint Domenic "Nick" Dell'Osso as President and Chief Executive Officer and a member of the company's Board of Directors, effective immediately. Mike Wichterich, who served as Interim Chief Executive Officer, will assume the role of Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors. Additionally, the company provided highlights of the comprehensive changes made to its Executive Compensation program.

Chevron sets net zero 2050 carbon goals for its operations

Chevron Corp. committed to an “aspiration” of net zero emissions from its operations by 2050 as the company responds to rising investor and societal pressure to play a bigger role in a transition to a low-carbon future.

§  Australia wants a ‘pause button’ for its global climate change commitments

§  TotalEnergies and Qnergy work to reduce methane emissions on the Barnett field

§  Oil prices hold gains as energy shortages boost winter demand

§  Brunei Shell Petroleum Company and AccessESP successfully complete GoRigless ESP pilot project

§  U.S. likely to ask OPEC for more oil, says Daniel Yergin

Daily International Coal Prices

New!

Coal

PMO reviews coal supply, power availability situation

The shortage of coal -- which makes up around 70 per cent of India's electricity mix -- has forced rotational power cuts in states from Rajasthan to Kerala.

Coal Crisis: 10 States Including Maharashtra, Punjab & Bengal Owe CIL Nearly 2,000 Bn

At least 10 states including Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Rajasthan owe Coal India Limited (CIL) over Rs 19,9000 crore in outstanding dues despite being reminded of it multiple times, top government sorces have told CNN-News18, adding that despite this the government-owned coal mining and refining corporation maintained its supply to these states.

§  Will Commercial Coal Mining attract global players to invest in India?

[Poll Question]

§  Why coal shortage despite improved production in coal-dependant India?

§  Power cuts in Rajasthan amid coal shortage: official

§  Minister says Maharashtra facing 4,000 MW power shortage, blames Coal India for fuel supply crunch

§  Modi government responsible for current shortage of coal in country: NCP

§  CIL must get its act together, discoms too

§  India allows power plants to blend imported coal with local grade

Roads

 

NHAI floats tender for Ratnagiri-Kolhapur road

Three packages totalling Rs 3132.19 crore

No work scheduled for widening NH 365BB despite notification

The state government is waiting for the commencement of work on NH 365BB, which is a key road in Telangana state

§  Roads Projects Balance for Award by NHAI As on 30th September 2021 [Exclusive]

§  Roads Projects Awarded by NHAI but Construction Awaited As on 30th September 2021 [Exclusive]

§  DPR for Chennai Port-Maduravoyal double-decker expressway soon

§  Tamil Nadu’s first multi-modal logistics park to come up in Tiruvallur

§  Land acquisition for Delhi-Katra expressway picks up pace in Ludhiana district

§  Mumbai: Bhiwandi flyover shut for repairs

§  Empowered committee to allocate funds for roads maintenance

§  Do you think 100 percent FASTAG implementation will remove congestion at toll plazas?

[Poll Question]

Projects Update

Project Name

Promoter/Client

State

Length (Km)

Four Laning Belgaum- Khanapur NH-4A

NHAI/Ashoka Concessions limited

Karnataka

30

Four Laning Ring Road Bypass Nagpur City (Fetri to Dhargaon)Package-II (NH-7)

NHAI/MEP Infrastructure-Sanjosh India (JV)

Maharashtra

28.03

Four Laning Rimuli to Koida NH-215 (New NH-520) Pkg-I

NHAI/Montecarlo Pvt. Ltd.

Odisha

43.2

Eight Laning Vadodara Kim Expressway (Padra to Vadodara Section of Vadodara Mumbai ) (Phase-1A PKG-1)

NHAI/ IRB Infrastructure Developers Limited(VK 1 Expressway pvt. ltd)

Gujarat,Maharashtra

23.74

Bridge on Panjim to Mangalore NH-17 (Old NH-66)

NHAI/Dilip Buildcon-Mostobudivelnyi Zahin Ukrane(JV)

Goa

2

Power(9 News Items)

General


PMO reviews coal supply, power availability situation

·         Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on Tuesday reviewed the coal supply and power generation scenario as the government looks at ways to defuse the energy crisis being faced by several states.

·         At the meeting over coal shortage at power plants which have led to blackouts in some states, Power Secretary Alok Kumar and Coal Secretary AK Jain made a presentation on coal and power availability, sources said, adding that ways to increase transportation of coal were also discussed during the meeting.

·         The coal ministry has been asked to ramp up the supply of coal while railways has been asked to make available rakes to transport the fuel to power plants, the sources said.

·         The shortage of coal — which makes up around 70 per cent of India’s electricity mix — has forced rotational power cuts in states from Rajasthan to Kerala.

·         About two-thirds of the coal-fired power plants had stockpiles of a week or less but the coal ministry said, “any fear of disruption in the power supply is entirely misplaced.”

·         States have been forced to buy power from exchanges at high rates to meet demand.

·         To defuse the crisis, the Union power ministry has issued instructions ranging from asking states not to sell power at high prices on the exchange to ordering state electricity generators to ensure adequate supplies.

·         State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) has been asked to augment the coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes per day this week and to further scale it up to 1.7 million tonnes daily after October 20.

·         The coal dispatched by CIL to the power sector on Monday stood at 1.615 million tonnes.

·         Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi said the government is making full efforts to meet the coal demand of power producers. “We at the ministry and CIL are making full efforts to meet the coal demand… Yesterday (Monday), we supplied around 1.95 million tonnes of coal. Around 1.6 million tonnes from CIL and the remaining from Singareni Collieries Company Ltd. All put together, 1.95 million tonnes we have supplied”.

·         Speaking at the launch event of the third tranche of the auction for commercial mining of coal, the minister said, “from October 20-21 or before that, we will try to reach two million tonnes (supply), which will again be a record”.

·         CIL has around 22 days of stock and supplies will be ramped up as monsoon rains in coal belt that led to the flooding of mines have receded.

·         Responding to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s warning of a potential power crisis in the national capital, state-owned NTPC tweeted saying that distribution companies in Delhi were taking only 70 per cent of the power that it was made available to them.

Source

 

Top

India working on an ‘Energy Storage’ policy

·         As part of India’s green energy push, the government is working on an Energy Storage policy for large scale integration of renewable energy with the country’s power system.

·         There is a growing traction for hydropower projects among Indian clean energy majors. Large storages can help keep India’s power grids stable, given electricity is produced intermittently from clean energy sources such as solar and wind. The idea is to use cheap green power during off-peak hours to raise water to a height and then release it into a lower reservoir to generate electricity.

·         The union power ministry has invited “suggestions with regard to formulation of comprehensive policy framework and recommend other interventions to promote energy storage in power sector."

·         India has crossed 100 gigawatt (GW) of installed solar and wind capacity, with another 63GW under construction. The plan is to have 175GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 and 450GW by 2030. This huge injection of electricity in the grid from sources such as solar and wind requires a storage mechanism that can help balance the national electricity grid.

·         A 6 October public notice from the ministry said, “Government of India intends to bring out a comprehensive policy on energy storage in power sector. The policy would broadly focus on regulatory, financial and taxation, demand management and technological aspects in order to speed up the implementation of storage capacity driven by the need to have increased flexibility in Indian power system to absorb the large scale integration of the renewable energy into the system during the coming years."

·         India plans to shortly come out with a policy to promote hydro pump storage schemes with around 96 GW identified as a potential capacity for the same.

·         “India is on track to achieve 450 GW - installed capacity from renewable energy by 2030," the power ministry said in a tweet on Monday night.

·         This comes at a time when India plans to set up a 14 gigawatt-hour (GWh) grid-scale battery storage system at the world’s largest renewable energy park at Khavda in Gujarat and also plans to invite bids for the largest global tender for setting up a 13GWh grid-scale battery storage system in Ladakh.

·         The government also plans to call bids for setting up around 4GWh of the grid-scale battery storage system at the regional load dispatch centres. In addition, state-run NTPC Ltd has floated a global tender for setting up 1GWh grid-scale battery storage system. According to CEA, there will be a need for 27GW of grid-scale battery energy storage systems by 2030 with four hours of storage.

Source

 

Top

View: Solar installation surge puts India on track to cap coal-fired power as early as 2024

·         If India keeps installing solar capacity at the rate it's achieved for the last three months, coal-fired power could peak in the 2023-24 Financial Year, and increased solar generation alone could meet the country's growing electricity requirements in subsequent years.

·         India's electricity demand has surged and slumped in recent months as the economy revives in fits and starts, but the fact is that coal-fired power is increasingly sensitive to the performance of renewable energy.

·         Coal has effectively become India's swing producer of electricity, rising to new peaks in periods when demand is high and renewable power low, but slumping deeply when demand falls and renewable energy's contribution rises.

·         In recent months thermal generation has swung between a daily low of just over 2.0 TWh on August 1 (when renewable energy and hydroelectricity provided 38% of India's electricity), to as high as 3.2 TWh just over two weeks later when renewable energy and hydro made a smaller though still impressive 25% contribution to the grid.

·         But while the variable nature of renewable energy is well known and the financial fortunes of coal-fired power are increasingly tied to its generation level, it is a recent change in a different number that may prove decisive in determining how soon coal's contribution to India's electricity reaches its peak. That number is the rate at which the country is installing new solar capacity.

·         Calendar year 2020's pandemic conditions saw new solar installations fall to an average of just 411 MW per month, compared to 665 MW per month as the average since January 2017. But since May this year there has been a very strong rebound. A total of 1,248 MW of solar capacity was added in June, followed by an additional 1,605 MW in July, rising again to 1,672 MW in August.

·         This average of 1,508 MW per month for the last quarter does more than simply double the long-term installation rate - it shows just how close India could be to capping thermal generation. If this installation rate continued, solar capacity would reach 109 GW by March 2024, generating some 87 TWh of additional power annually, enough to meet all of India's electricity generation increase, based on the latter's 5.7% annual growth rate over the decade to 2019.

·         Some other adjustments would be needed if coal-fired power were to peak and subsequently decline. Daily peak demand has been rising faster than daily energy, meaning that thermal plants would increasingly have to be deployed to meet the daily peak, as would hydroelectric generators, without increasing their overall output.

·         Additional pumped storage and India's first set of grid-scale batteries would also support the peak, along with the development of a time-of-day pricing structure to incentivise demand response management by industry and consumers.

·         Whether the actual installation rate matches, falls short of, or exceeds this rate will come down to the determination of the Indian government. The current rate would comfortably meet the 60 GW ground-mounted component of the 2022 125 GW renewable target, but not quite match the average rate needed to hit the 280 GW solar component of the 450 GW 2030 goal.

·         What the last few months clearly demonstrate, however, is India's ability to now accelerate the installation of grid-scale solar fast enough to cap coal-fired power before the middle of the decade and potentially to see a gradual coal generation decline from that point on.

·         The recent lift in rooftop solar installs, along with increased development of wind and rounding out those nearly completed hydro power projects to which India is committed could make our timeline here conservative indeed!

Source

 

Top

Power cuts in Rajasthan amid coal shortage: official

·         Rajasthan has been forced to resort to power cuts on a rotational basis across the state as it faces a shortage of coal for generating electricity, a top official said on Tuesday.

·         Additional chief secretary Subodh Agarwal said currently 9,317 MW of power is available in the state while the average demand is 10,683 MW. He added the maximum average demand is 12,200 MW. Agrawal said the state has again written to the Union coal secretary seeking an increase in the supply of coal. He added chief minister Ashok Gehlot has been continuously reviewing the situation and as a result, the situation has started improving.

·         Agrawal said due to their efforts, 15 to 16 coal rakes were being dispatched to the state. “A total of 16 rakes were dispatched on October 10 compared to 15 the previous day. Around 21 rakes of coal are required per day for all the thermal units in the state.”

·         Union home minister Amit Shah met coal minister Pralhad Joshi and power and renewable energy minister Raj Kumar Singh on Monday and directed them to ensure uninterrupted fuel supplies to power plants. The meeting was held amid concerns of some states that depleted coal stocks at power generation plants may lead to potential blackouts.

Source

 

Top

India’s solar power capacityneeds to increase, says study

·         India’s total installed solar power capacity would need to increase to 5,630 gigawatt (GW) to achieve net-zero target by 2070. Also, the transition to net-zero could cost India 4.1% of its gross domestic product (GDP) in 2070, says an independent study released on Tuesday by the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW).

·         At present, the country has 100 gigawatt (GW) of installed renewable energy capacity of which solar comprises 40 GW. The government aims to enhance the clean energy capacity to 450 GW by 2030.

·         The first-of-its-kind study titled ‘Implications of a Net-zero Target for India’s Sectoral Energy Transitions and Climate Policy’ also stated that to achieve net-zero by 2070, usage of coal, especially for power generation, would need to peak by 2040 and drop by 99% between 2040 and 2060.

·         “Consumption of crude oil across sectors would also need to peak by 2050 and fall substantially by 90% between 2050 and 2070,” it added.

·         The analysis further found that green hydrogen could contribute 19% of the total energy needs of the industrial sector. “These insights assume that hydrogen would play an integral part in this transition, while carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology would play a negligible role,” the study stated.

·         According to the experts, the findings of the study are pertinent as the recent report by the inter-governmental panel on climate change (IPCC) underscores the criticality of achieving net-zero globally to limit the total rise in temperatures to 1.5-2 degrees in the coming decades.

·         Even though India is yet to commit to a net-zero target, it is the only G20 country to meet its emission reduction commitments made in the Paris Agreement.

·         Stating that at least a thirty-year gap between peaking and net-zero year would be critical for a developing country like India, Vaibhav Chaturvedi, fellow at CEEW, said, “This will ensure a smooth transition by giving policymakers and other stakeholders sufficient time to plan and adapt to a new energy system. Also, as we move towards a net-zero future, energy prices could rise in the short run and workers that are a part of the fossil-fuel economy could lose jobs. Hence, developed countries should offer generous financial and technological support to the developing ones to help them set ambitious goals regarding emission reduction while ensuring a just transition.”

·         In agreement, CEO of CEEW Arunabha Ghosh said, “Equity must be at the heart of the net-zero debate. Developed economies should significantly advance their target of achieving net-zero and not wait till 2050. This will give developing countries room to pursue a just and sustainable energy transition.”

·         She added that India should also co-invest and co-develop new green technologies in partnership with other countries to create new jobs and markets. “Green hydrogen is one such technology that could replace coal in the industrial sector,” said Ghosh.

·         The study also highlights that electric or battery-driven passenger vehicles would comprise 84% of all cars sold in the country. “79% of all trucks would run on battery-electric technology and rest on hydrogen. Households across the country would also have to use electricity as the primary cooking fuel. The share of wind and nuclear energy in India’s electricity generation mix would have to increase to 1792 GW and 225 GW respectively,” it added.

·         WHAT THE STUDY SAYS

·         - India’s total installed solar power capacity to increase to 5,630 gigawatt to achieve net-zero by 2070

·         - Transition to net-zero to cost India 4.1% of its GDP in 2070

·         - Green hydrogen to contribute 19% of total energy needs of industrial sector

·         - Electric vehicles to comprise 84% of all cars sold in country

·         - Share of wind and nuclear energy to increase to 1792 GW and 225 GW

Source

 

Top

Punjab may take electricity supply from Tata Power's Mundra plant: Report

·         PSPCL Chairman and Managing Director A Venu Prasad said that all private coal-based plants in the state have less than two days of coal stock, while the state-owned plants have below four days of coal supply. (Representative image)

·         The Punjab government has agreed to take electricity from Tata Power's plant at Mundra in Gujarat, amid concerns of a blackout due to the shortage of coal at thermal power plants.

·         The state will source supply from Tata Power's imported coal-based power plant at Mundra for one week on an actual fuel cost basis, The Economic Times has reported. A final confirmation from Tata Power is awaited.

·         The cost of power supply from the plant is pegged Rs 5.5 per unit against an average price of Rs 16 per unit on the power exchange. Punjab's own power generation cost is around Rs 4 per unit, sources told the publication.

·         Gujarat and Maharashtra, too might take power from the plant, the report said.

·         Moneycontrol could not independently verify the story.

·         Tata Power had not yet responded when contacted by The Economic Times.

·         Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on October 11 said he has asked the Centre to ensure adequate supply of coal. He also said his government will not let a blackout occur in the state.

·         State-owned Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) on October 11 procured 1,500 MW of electricity at a rate of over Rs 14 per unit, PTI reported.

·         PSPCL Chairman and Managing Director A Venu Prasad said that all private coal-based plants in the state have less than two days of coal stock, while the state-owned plants have below four days of coal supply.

Source

 

Top

Minister says Maharashtra facing 4,000 MW power shortage, blames Coal India for fuel supply crunch

·         Maharashtra Energy Minister Nitin Raut on Tuesday said the state is facing a shortage of 3,500 to 4,000 MW of electricity supply and blamed "mismanagement and lack of planning" on part of central PSU Coal India Ltd (CIL) for the situation.

·         He said Coal India, a Maharatna PSU and the largest producer of the fossil fuel, has failed to ensure timely supply of coal for thermal power generation plants in the state.

·         Speaking to reporters, Raut said, "Maharashtra is facing a shortage of electricity supply between 3,500 and 4,000 MW. It is due to Coal India's unorganized functioning and lack of planning which has resulted in Maharashtra facing a severe shortage of coal."

·         The Congress minister also accused Coastal Gujarat Power Ltd and JSW of not supplying power to Maharashtra despite having agreements to this effect.

·         He said, "Coastal Gujarat Power Ltd and JSW have agreements with state power utilities to supply 760 MW and 240 MW, respectively.

·         "Both the companies have not been supplying power to Maharashtra, creating a shortage of 1,000 MW. We have long-term agreements with these companies and they do have enough stock, but still power is not being supplied to Maharashtra."

·         According to the latest coal-stock data of the 135 plants with over 165 GW of installed generation capacity monitored by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), as many 70 plants are categorised as super-critical stock, or having less than four days of fuel, on October 10, 2021, compared to 64 a week ago on October 3, 2021.

·         The Central government has asked CIL to augment coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes (MT) per day around the Durga Puja period and to further scale it to 1.7 MT per day after October 20.

·         The coal ministry on Sunday assured sufficient dry fuel is available in the country to meet the demand of electricity generating plants and said any fear of disruption in power supply is "entirely misplaced".

·         Officials had attributed shortage of coal to disruption of transport due to heavy rains in mining areas.

Source

 

Top

India orders power firms to boost supply to Delhi

·         India's power ministry said on Tuesday it has issued directions to the country's largest electricity producer state-run NTPC Ltd and Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) to supply as much power as available to the national capital Delhi due to a potential shortage.

·         The move comes after Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday warned of a power crisis in the capital due to a coal shortage, which has already triggered electricity cuts in some of the country's eastern and northern states.

Source

 

Top

India allows power plants to blend imported coal with local grade

·         India on Tuesday allowed power producers to expedite imports of coal to use for up to 10% of blends with the domestic grade to meet increased power demand in a move that could push up already high global prices.

·         Asia's third-largest economy is facing large-scale outages as several power plants have low coal inventories amid a sharp spike in global energy prices.

·         So far power plants that use local coal import little.

·         The note said supply from state-run Coal India Ltd is not commensurate with the surge in electricity consumption, leading to a change in government policy on coal imports.

·         India's power demand has been rising with the revival of the economy after the lifting of COVID 19-induced restrictions. (Reporting by Sudarshan Varadhan; editing by Jason Neely)

Source

 

Top

Renewable(9 News Items)

India working on an ‘Energy Storage’ policy

·         As part of India’s green energy push, the government is working on an Energy Storage policy for large scale integration of renewable energy with the country’s power system.

·         There is a growing traction for hydropower projects among Indian clean energy majors. Large storages can help keep India’s power grids stable, given electricity is produced intermittently from clean energy sources such as solar and wind. The idea is to use cheap green power during off-peak hours to raise water to a height and then release it into a lower reservoir to generate electricity.

·         The union power ministry has invited “suggestions with regard to formulation of comprehensive policy framework and recommend other interventions to promote energy storage in power sector."

·         India has crossed 100 gigawatt (GW) of installed solar and wind capacity, with another 63GW under construction. The plan is to have 175GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 and 450GW by 2030. This huge injection of electricity in the grid from sources such as solar and wind requires a storage mechanism that can help balance the national electricity grid.

·         A 6 October public notice from the ministry said, “Government of India intends to bring out a comprehensive policy on energy storage in power sector. The policy would broadly focus on regulatory, financial and taxation, demand management and technological aspects in order to speed up the implementation of storage capacity driven by the need to have increased flexibility in Indian power system to absorb the large scale integration of the renewable energy into the system during the coming years."

·         India plans to shortly come out with a policy to promote hydro pump storage schemes with around 96 GW identified as a potential capacity for the same.

·         “India is on track to achieve 450 GW - installed capacity from renewable energy by 2030," the power ministry said in a tweet on Monday night.

·         This comes at a time when India plans to set up a 14 gigawatt-hour (GWh) grid-scale battery storage system at the world’s largest renewable energy park at Khavda in Gujarat and also plans to invite bids for the largest global tender for setting up a 13GWh grid-scale battery storage system in Ladakh.

·         The government also plans to call bids for setting up around 4GWh of the grid-scale battery storage system at the regional load dispatch centres. In addition, state-run NTPC Ltd has floated a global tender for setting up 1GWh grid-scale battery storage system. According to CEA, there will be a need for 27GW of grid-scale battery energy storage systems by 2030 with four hours of storage.

Source

 

Top

View: Solar installation surge puts India on track to cap coal-fired power as early as 2024

·         If India keeps installing solar capacity at the rate it's achieved for the last three months, coal-fired power could peak in the 2023-24 Financial Year, and increased solar generation alone could meet the country's growing electricity requirements in subsequent years.

·         India's electricity demand has surged and slumped in recent months as the economy revives in fits and starts, but the fact is that coal-fired power is increasingly sensitive to the performance of renewable energy.

·         Coal has effectively become India's swing producer of electricity, rising to new peaks in periods when demand is high and renewable power low, but slumping deeply when demand falls and renewable energy's contribution rises.

·         In recent months thermal generation has swung between a daily low of just over 2.0 TWh on August 1 (when renewable energy and hydroelectricity provided 38% of India's electricity), to as high as 3.2 TWh just over two weeks later when renewable energy and hydro made a smaller though still impressive 25% contribution to the grid.

·         But while the variable nature of renewable energy is well known and the financial fortunes of coal-fired power are increasingly tied to its generation level, it is a recent change in a different number that may prove decisive in determining how soon coal's contribution to India's electricity reaches its peak. That number is the rate at which the country is installing new solar capacity.

·         Calendar year 2020's pandemic conditions saw new solar installations fall to an average of just 411 MW per month, compared to 665 MW per month as the average since January 2017. But since May this year there has been a very strong rebound. A total of 1,248 MW of solar capacity was added in June, followed by an additional 1,605 MW in July, rising again to 1,672 MW in August.

·         This average of 1,508 MW per month for the last quarter does more than simply double the long-term installation rate - it shows just how close India could be to capping thermal generation. If this installation rate continued, solar capacity would reach 109 GW by March 2024, generating some 87 TWh of additional power annually, enough to meet all of India's electricity generation increase, based on the latter's 5.7% annual growth rate over the decade to 2019.

·         Some other adjustments would be needed if coal-fired power were to peak and subsequently decline. Daily peak demand has been rising faster than daily energy, meaning that thermal plants would increasingly have to be deployed to meet the daily peak, as would hydroelectric generators, without increasing their overall output.

·         Additional pumped storage and India's first set of grid-scale batteries would also support the peak, along with the development of a time-of-day pricing structure to incentivise demand response management by industry and consumers.

·         Whether the actual installation rate matches, falls short of, or exceeds this rate will come down to the determination of the Indian government. The current rate would comfortably meet the 60 GW ground-mounted component of the 2022 125 GW renewable target, but not quite match the average rate needed to hit the 280 GW solar component of the 450 GW 2030 goal.

·         What the last few months clearly demonstrate, however, is India's ability to now accelerate the installation of grid-scale solar fast enough to cap coal-fired power before the middle of the decade and potentially to see a gradual coal generation decline from that point on.

·         The recent lift in rooftop solar installs, along with increased development of wind and rounding out those nearly completed hydro power projects to which India is committed could make our timeline here conservative indeed!

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India’s solar power capacityneeds to increase, says study

·         India’s total installed solar power capacity would need to increase to 5,630 gigawatt (GW) to achieve net-zero target by 2070. Also, the transition to net-zero could cost India 4.1% of its gross domestic product (GDP) in 2070, says an independent study released on Tuesday by the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW).

·         At present, the country has 100 gigawatt (GW) of installed renewable energy capacity of which solar comprises 40 GW. The government aims to enhance the clean energy capacity to 450 GW by 2030.

·         The first-of-its-kind study titled ‘Implications of a Net-zero Target for India’s Sectoral Energy Transitions and Climate Policy’ also stated that to achieve net-zero by 2070, usage of coal, especially for power generation, would need to peak by 2040 and drop by 99% between 2040 and 2060.

·         “Consumption of crude oil across sectors would also need to peak by 2050 and fall substantially by 90% between 2050 and 2070,” it added.

·         The analysis further found that green hydrogen could contribute 19% of the total energy needs of the industrial sector. “These insights assume that hydrogen would play an integral part in this transition, while carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology would play a negligible role,” the study stated.

·         According to the experts, the findings of the study are pertinent as the recent report by the inter-governmental panel on climate change (IPCC) underscores the criticality of achieving net-zero globally to limit the total rise in temperatures to 1.5-2 degrees in the coming decades.

·         Even though India is yet to commit to a net-zero target, it is the only G20 country to meet its emission reduction commitments made in the Paris Agreement.

·         Stating that at least a thirty-year gap between peaking and net-zero year would be critical for a developing country like India, Vaibhav Chaturvedi, fellow at CEEW, said, “This will ensure a smooth transition by giving policymakers and other stakeholders sufficient time to plan and adapt to a new energy system. Also, as we move towards a net-zero future, energy prices could rise in the short run and workers that are a part of the fossil-fuel economy could lose jobs. Hence, developed countries should offer generous financial and technological support to the developing ones to help them set ambitious goals regarding emission reduction while ensuring a just transition.”

·         In agreement, CEO of CEEW Arunabha Ghosh said, “Equity must be at the heart of the net-zero debate. Developed economies should significantly advance their target of achieving net-zero and not wait till 2050. This will give developing countries room to pursue a just and sustainable energy transition.”

·         She added that India should also co-invest and co-develop new green technologies in partnership with other countries to create new jobs and markets. “Green hydrogen is one such technology that could replace coal in the industrial sector,” said Ghosh.

·         The study also highlights that electric or battery-driven passenger vehicles would comprise 84% of all cars sold in the country. “79% of all trucks would run on battery-electric technology and rest on hydrogen. Households across the country would also have to use electricity as the primary cooking fuel. The share of wind and nuclear energy in India’s electricity generation mix would have to increase to 1792 GW and 225 GW respectively,” it added.

·         WHAT THE STUDY SAYS

·         - India’s total installed solar power capacity to increase to 5,630 gigawatt to achieve net-zero by 2070

·         - Transition to net-zero to cost India 4.1% of its GDP in 2070

·         - Green hydrogen to contribute 19% of total energy needs of industrial sector

·         - Electric vehicles to comprise 84% of all cars sold in country

·         - Share of wind and nuclear energy to increase to 1792 GW and 225 GW

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India needs 5630 GW installed solar capacity to become net-zero nation by 2070: Report

·         “To achieve net-zero target by 2070, usage of coal especially for power generation would need to peak by 2040 and drop by 99 per cent between 2040 and 2060. And, the consumption of crude oil across sectors would also need to peak by 2050 and fall substantially by 90 per cent between 2050 and 2070,” the study added.

·         “India should increase its solar power capacity to 5630 gigawatt in order to become a net-zero emissions nation by 2070,” according to a study.

·         “At present, India has 100 GW of installed renewable energy capacity, of which solar comprises 40 GW,” the study released by the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) on Tuesday said.

·         The government has set an ambitious target to scale up its total renewable energy capacity to 450 GW by 2030.

·         ‘Implications of a Net-zero Target for India’s Sectoral Energy Transitions and Climate Policy’: Study released by CEEW

·         “India’s total installed solar power capacity would need to increase to 5630 GW if it were to commit to achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emission by 2070,” the study titled ‘Implications of a Net-zero Target for India’s Sectoral Energy Transitions and Climate Policy’ said.

·         “The country would also need to develop the requisite recycling capacities to handle the solar PV (photovoltaic) waste generated. To achieve net-zero target by 2070, usage of coal especially for power generation would need to peak by 2040 and drop by 99 per cent between 2040 and 2060. Further, the consumption of crude oil across sectors would also need to peak by 2050 and fall substantially by 90 per cent between 2050 and 2070,” the study added.

·         Vaibhav Chaturvedi, fellow CEEW, said, “As we move towards a net-zero future, energy prices could rise in the short run and workers that are a part of the fossil-fuel economy could lose jobs. Hence, developed countries should offer generous financial and technological support to the developing ones to help them set ambitious goals regarding emissions reduction while ensuring a just transition.”

·         Arunabha Ghosh, CEO CEEW, said, “Developed economies should significantly advance their target of achieving net-zero and not wait till 2050. This will give developing countries room to pursue a just and sustainable energy transition. To meet the target, India should also co-invest and co-develop new green technologies in partnership with other countries to create new jobs and markets. Green hydrogen is one such technology that could replace coal in the industrial sector,” Ghosh added

·         According to the CEEW study, in 2070, electric or battery-driven passenger vehicles would comprise 84 per cent of total cars sold in the country.

·         Around 79 per cent of all trucks would run on battery-electric technology and rest on hydrogen. Households across the country would also have to use electricity as the primary cooking fuel.

·         CEEW is a not-for-profit policy research institution.

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MYSUN bags 140-MW solar power projects in UP

·         Rooftop solar firm MYSUN has bagged 140-megawatt (MW) open-access solar power projects from the Uttar Pradesh Power Transmission Corp Ltd (UPPTCL), according to a company statement. "MYSUN, India's leading distributed solar company, has been allocated 140-MW solar projects under the captive/open access mode by the Uttar Pradesh Power Transmission Corporation Ltd (UPPTCL)," the company said in a statement.

·         The allocation process saw active participation from most of the large solar developers from all over the country, the firm added.

·         It will promote the use of solar energy in Uttar Pradesh for large industries and corporations.

·         The latest round of allocation saw connectivity approvals being granted for central, western and eastern parts of UP. Overall, about 1.5 gigawatts (GW) of grid sub-station capacity was put up for allocation. MYSUN will develop these projects across multiple districts primarily in parts of the western Uttar Pradesh.

·         MYSUN founder and CEO Gagan Vermani said in the statement, "The allocation of this 140 MW is a commitment from our side to provide clean, reliable and affordable solar power to large energy consumers like industries, data centers, corporate parks and builders in Uttar Pradesh.."

·         Under its recently launched asset vehicle MYSUN+, the company is expanding its presence across states like Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and the national capital region

·         The company is already in early-stage development of more than 220 MW of projects under the captive/ open access mechanisms.

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Reliance New Energy Solar to invest in NexWafe as strategic lead investor

·         Freiburg (Germany), NexWafe GmbH (NexWafe) on Tuesday announced the induction of Reliance New Energy Solar Ltd (RNESL), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Industries Ltd, as a strategic lead investor in its 39 million euros ($45 million) Series C financing round with an investment of 25 million euros ($29 million) in phase one.

·         The investment by Reliance will accelerate product and technology development for NexWafe, including completion of the commercial development of NexWafe's solar photovoltaic products on prototype lines in Freiburg.

·         Reliance and NexWafe have also entered into an India Strategic Partnership Agreement providing for joint technology development and commercialisation, at scale, of high- efficiency monocrystalline "green solar wafers".

·         Reliance, through this partnership, will secure access to NexWafe's proprietary technology and plans to build large-scale wafer manufacturing facilities in India using the NexWafe processes and technology.

·         NexWafe is developing and producing monocrystalline silicon wafers grown directly from inexpensive raw materials, going directly from the gas phase to finished wafers. This proprietary process obviates the need for costly and energy intensive intermediate steps such as polysilicon production and ingot pulling on which traditional wafer manufacturing relies.

·         NexWafe uses in-line manufacturing, both for the formation of an initial release layer as well as for epitaxial deposition of silicon in an atmospheric chemical vapour deposition process.

·         Its patented technology is expected to drastically cut wafer production costs, making solar photovoltaics the lowest-cost form of renewable energy available.

·         Reliance's investment in NexWafe further underscores its goal of making India the world's leading green energy provider by leapfrogging existing technology, thus creating the world's most cost- and energy-efficient photovoltaic process at scale.

·         RIL Chairman Mukesh Ambani said: "We at Reliance have always believed in being ahead of the technology curve in all our businesses. Our partnership with NexWafe testifies to this yet again, as we embark on an ambitious mission to meet affordable green energy needs of India's rapidly growing economy.

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Tata Power Solar bags order of ₹538 cr from EESL

·         Tata Power Solar, one of the country's largest integrated solar company and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Power, on Tuesday said that it has received “Letter of Award" (LoA) to build 100 MW of Distributed Ground Mounted Solar projects for Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL).

·         The total order value of projects is ₹538 crore. The commissioning date of the projects is set for 12 months, the solar company said in a regulatory filing.

·         With this win, the Utility Scale EPC order book of Tata Power Solar now stands at ~4GW (DC) capacity with an approximate value of ₹9,264 crore (without GST), thereby strengthening its position as the country's leading Solar EPC player.

·         The EESL project sites are located in Maharashtra. The work secured includes engineering, design, supply, construction, erection, testing, O&M and commissioning of the solar projects.

·         Speaking on this, Dr Praveer Sinha, CEO & MD, Tata Power said, “We are enthused with the new contract win from EESL for Distributed Ground Mounted Solar EPC projects. This is yet another recognition of Tata Power's strong credentials in the solar energy domain and project execution capabilities."

·         Tata Power Solar ranked as top India's solar player

·         Over the years, Tata Power Solar has been one of the country's leading solar rooftop EPC player with compelling economics, especially for the commercial and industrial segment.

·         Tata Power Solar comes with a successful background of executing large projects, to name a few 150MW Ayana at Ananthapur, 50 MW Kasargod at Kerala, 56MW Greenko, 30MWp Solar Power Plant in Lapanga, Odisha, 105MWp of Floating solar at Kayamkulam (under implementation).

·         It has also won an auction conducted by Gujarat for 400 MW of projects to be built at Dholera solar Park.

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Central Electronics Limited tenders 147 MW of decentralized solar in Maharashtra

·         Central Electronics Limited (CEL) has invited bids to set up a cumulative 147 MW of grid-interactive decentralized solar capacity in the Indian State of Maharashtra on a turnkey basis. The decentralized solar power generating systems, ranging from 2 MW to 10 MW (AC), shall come up at substations in various locations of the State.

·         The requisite land for implementation of the proposed solar PV power plants at different sub-stations will be provided to the successful bidders.

·         The scope of work includes site surveys, design and engineering, procurement and supply of equipment and materials, installation, testing, and commissioning of the solar systems, and performance demonstration with associated equipment and materials along with associated transmission system up to 11 kV or 22 kV at designated substations. The installer shall also provide comprehensive operation and maintenance support to the plant for 12 years.

·         Only crystalline silicon-based PV modules are allowed for the projects. Each of the modules shall be rated for a peak output of a minimum of 330 watts with 72 cells. The efficiency of the PV modules should be a minimum of 16% and the fill factor should be more than 75%.

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Tata Power Solar to Set Up 100 MW Solar Projects in Maharashtra

·         Tata Power Solar, one of India’s largest integrated solar companies and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Power, has received Letter of Award (LoA) to build 100MW of distributed ground mounted solar projects for Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL).

·         The total order value of projects is ÌNR 538 crores. The commissioning date of the projects is set for 12 months. With this win, the Utility Scale EPC order book of Tata Power Solar now stands at ~4GW (DC) capacity with an approximate value of INR 9,264 crore (without GST), said the company.

·         The EESL project sites are located in Maharashtra. The work secured includes engineering, design, supply, construction, erection, testing, O&M and commissioning of the solar projects.

·         “We are enthused with the new contract win from EESL for Distributed Ground Mounted Solar EPC projects. This is yet another recognition of Tata Power’s strong credentials in the solar energy domain and project execution capabilities,” said Dr. Praveer Sinha, CEO & MD, Tata Power.

·         Tata Power Solar has executed various large projects in the past, such as 150MW Ayana at Ananthapur, 50 MW Kasargod at Kerala, 56MW Greenko, 30MWp Solar Power Plant in Lapanga, Odisha, and 105MWp of Floating solar at Kayamkulam (under implementation). It has also won an auction conducted by Gujarat for 400 MW of projects to be built at Dholera solar Park.

·         The company operates a manufacturing unit in Bangalore, with a production capacity of 580MW of modules and 530 MW of cells. The firm has a portfolio of more than 7GW of ground-mount utility-scale, and over 615MW of rooftop and distributed generation projects across the country till date.

·         It also offers a diverse line of solar solutions for both urban and rural markets – these include rooftop solutions, solar pumps, and power packs among others. Founded in 1989, Tata Power Solar was originally formed as a joint venture between Tata Power and British Petroleum Solar (BP Solar).

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Oil & Gas(8 News Items)

Only 3 bidders for 21 oil, gas blocks; Vedanta, Reliance stay away

·         India's latest bid round for 21 oil and gas blocks attracted just three bidders, two of whom were state-owned explorers Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India Ltd (OIL), according to upstream regulator DGH.

·         As many as 21 blocks or areas were offered for exploration and production of oil and gas in the Open Acreage Licensing Policy (OALP) Bid Round-VI, for which bidding closed on October 6.

·         Besides ONGC and OIL, Sun Petrochemicals was the only other company to have bid, according to 'Summary of Bids Received Against Offered Blocks' posted by the Directorate General of Hydrocarbons (DGH).

·         Of the 21 blocks on offer, 18 got a single bid and the remaining 3 blocks had two bidders.

·         ONGC, India's largest oil producer, bid for 19 out of the 21 blocks on offer while OIL bid for two. ONGC was the sole bidder in 16 blocks and OIL was the only bidder in the two areas it sought for.

·         Sun Petrochemicals bid for three blocks, where it is locked in competition with ONGC.

·         Vedanta Ltd and Reliance-BP combine, which had bid in previous rounds of OALP, did not bid in the current round.

·         The government has been hoping that opening up of more acreage for exploration will help boost India's oil and gas production, helping cut down the USD 90 billion oil import bill.

·         In 2016, it brought in an open acreage policy which moved away from the previous practice of government identifying and bidding out blocks to one where explorers were allowed the freedom to identify any area outside of the ones that are already with some company or other, for prospecting of oil and gas.

·         The areas identified are to be clubbed twice a year and offered for bidding. The firm identifying the area gets a 5 point advantage.

·         But except for the first-round, private sector participation has been scant. Mining mogul Anil Agarwal's Vedanta Ltd walked away with 41 blocks out of the 55 blocks on offer in the very first round and got another 10 areas in two subsequent rounds.

·         Other rounds have been dominated by state-owned firms.

·         India is 85 per cent dependent on imports to meet its oil needs and finding newer reserves through exploration rounds is key to cutting that reliance.

·         In the previous five OALP bid rounds, 105 blocks for exploration of oil and gas were bid for. Of these, Vedanta Ltd walked away with 51. OIL won 25 and ONGC another 24.

·         The joint venture of Reliance Industries and BP got one block. Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), GAIL, BRPL and HOEC too got one block each.

·         The 105 blocks spanning an area of around 156,580 square kilometers in over 17 Sedimentary Basins of India attracted a total committed investment of around USD 2.378 billion in the exploration phase.

·         The 21 OALP-VI blocks are spread over 11 Sedimentary Basins, 9 states covering 35,346 sq km of area. Of these, 15 blocks are onland, 4 in shallow waters and two in ultra-deepwater.

·         At the time of the launch of OALP-VI in August, the government had said it is expecting USD 300-400 million investment commitment in the exploration of oil and gas through the round.

·         Under OALP, blocks in Category-I basins are awarded to a company offering the highest share of the revenue from oil and gas produced. Those in Category II and III are bid out to those offering maximum exploration or investment commitment.

·         Category-I basins have established reserves and fields that are already producing while Category-II basins are the ones that have contingent resources pending commercial production. Category-III basins are ones that have prospective resources awaiting discovery.

·         In OALP-VI, 12 blocks lie in Category-I basins while 4 are in Category-II and the remaining 5 in Category-III.

·         Features of the OALP round include reduced royalty rates, no oil cess, uniform licensing system, marketing and pricing freedom and revenue-sharing model, according to DGH.

·         Exploration rights are offered on all retained areas for full contract life, it said adding concessional royalty rates apply in case of early commercial production.

·         There is no revenue sharing in blocks falling in Category II and III Basins except in the case of windfall gains.

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Extraction of natural gas and oil not mining activity, experts call this move of NBWL regressive

·         In a move that may have wider implications, the national board for wildlife (NBWL) — an apex body that takes calls on conservation issues — has decided not to treat extraction of natural gas or oil as a mining activity under existing law on mines & minerals regulation in green areas.

·         Taking a call on projects near Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary in Tripura, the standing committee of the board in its last meeting recommended the proposals for diversion of forest land by going ahead with the opinion of state advocate general and solicitor general (SG) of India.

·         Minutes of the meeting, put out by environment ministry in public domain on October 8, show that the SG in its opinion, sought by ONGC, has expressed that extraction of natural gas and oil (which includes exploration and development) is not a mining activity when compared to a traditional open cast mining carried out upon large tract of land and that it cannot be considered as mining in terms of the Supreme Court’s August 2006 order on the issue.

·         Experts have, however, noted that the move would be disastrous for the environment and wildlife around national parks and sanctuaries.

·         “The Supreme Court order of 2006 relates to prohibiting mining activities within a distance of one km from the boundaries of national park and sanctuaries…The exemption has now been granted to both exploration and development of oil and gas. This is against the letter and spirit of the SC order which aims at a ‘no-go zone’ as far as one km is concerned,” said Ritwick Dutta of Legal Initiative for Forest and Environment (LIFE).

·         Terming the decision of the NBWL’s standing committee a “regressive” one, Dutta, an environmental lawyer, cited an example of the Baghjan gas leak incident of Assam that caused massive environmental damage to the Dibru-Saikhowa National Park and Maguri-Motapung Wetland last year.

·         Underlining importance of provisions which could restrict certain activities around ecologically sensitive areas, the LIFE in it analysis noted that the purpose of the restriction was to provide for a buffer area so far as National Parks and Sanctuaries are concerned so that there is no disturbance in the immediate vicinity of Protected areas. The order was passed since the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972 did not directly provide for any such restriction.

·         “However, the decision of the Standing Committee is based on the interpretation that extraction of natural gas/oil is not a mining activity under Mines and Mineral (Development and Regulation) Act, 1957. It is pertinent to point out that the Supreme Court in its order never stated that mining refers to mining as defined in the MMDR Act,” it said.

·         Dutta said, “The true purport of the Supreme Court order is to ensure that there is no destruction or disturbance in the immediate vicinity of National Parks and Sanctuaries through mining. The definition of Mine under the Mines Act, 1952 clearly includes Oil and Gas.”

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India Must Look to Russia for a Mutually Beneficial Energy Partnership

·         At his address to the 6th Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) plenary session, Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded President Vladimir Putin’s vision for the development of the Russian Far East and underlined the natural complementarities of India and Russia in the development of the same. The time has come for India and Russia to significantly enhance infrastructure and joint development plans to boost bilateral trade, especially in the energy sector.

·         Interesting developments are taking place in global energy markets with significant ramifications for geo-politics and the world economy. The Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) production cuts, fluctuations in world oil prices, economic sanctions, ageing oil and gas fields, insufficient implementation of energy technology and insufficient export capacity in the crude oil pipeline system have affected Russia’s capacity to export oil effortlessly. It is looking to diversify and expand its energy exports to Asian markets.

·         Just as Russia is actively pursuing a strategic re-direction toward Asia, so, too, should India as geopolitical instability in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region threatens to affect its import routes. India has been impacted by the US sanctions against Iran which have now reduced Iranian crude oil exports to almost zero. Growing at the fastest pace in the world, India’s oil demand is projected to reach 10 million barrels per day by 2030 from the current demand 5.05 million barrel per day. For an energy transition in which large volumes of coal consumption are poised to be substituted by cleaner natural gas, India has to start considering large import volumes of the same from Russia.

·         With 86.11% of its crude oil being imported, India must explore long-term, reliable and cost-effective options. Russia, being the largest exporter of natural gas and the second largest oil exporter, has the potential to be a reliable and economical alternative supplier. India’s liquid natural gas (LNG) imports are projected to quadruple by 2040. An increase in Russia’s energy production and its ability to export that energy could lend price certainty and supply stability to India’s oil situation.

·         These mutually aligned priorities have resulted in the exploration of a roadmap for Indian investment in infrastructure development projects in the Siberian and Arctic regions. Russia has been the single largest destination for Indian overseas investment in oil and gas projects, with cumulative investment exceeding $30 billion. But two-way trade has languished at just $10-11 billion. This is poised to change with the development of Vostok Oil, whose competitive advantage lies in its proximity to the Northern Sea Route, the arctic transport corridor which is becoming more and more accessible due to climate change.

·         After reaching its full capacity, the Vostok project is set to produce 50 – 100 million tons of oil per year and Rosneft aims to begin shipping oil from the planned project in 2024 via the Northern Sea Route, an alternative to the Suez Canal which shortens travels to the energy-hungry markets of Asia.

·         In February, 2020, the state-owned Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) signed a term contract with Rosneft for the supply of two million tonnes per annum of crude oil to India via the port of Novorossiysk (a Russian port on the Black Sea) by the end of 2020. This is the first-ever annual oil purchase deal signed between the two countries. Dharmendra Pradhan, Union minister of petroleum and natural gas as well as steel, described it as an “important milestone”.

·         During delegation-level talks with Igor Sechin, CEO of Rosneft, Pradhan said, “Hydrocarbon is an important pillar of the Strategic and Privileged Partnership between India and Russia. Indian oil and gas companies value their association with Rosneft, one of the important companies partnering in our energy security objectives.”

·         In August this year, while interacting with Russian energy minister Nikolay Shulginov, petroleum minister Hardeep Singh Puri reiterated the need for further investment by Indian companies in Russia’s upstream sector. Energy cooperation would entail strengthening hydrocarbons engagement in terms of both investment and sourcing.

·         Indian companies have considerable expertise in providing engineering consultancy and executing mega-projects across the hydrocarbon value chain. Russian gas producer Novatek’s agreement with Indian energy firm Petronet LNG Limited is an inimitable case of seizing a reciprocally favourable deal.

·         For India, importing gas and oil from Russia is imperative if the long-term strategy is to diversify the country’s crude oil supplies from non-OPEC countries, bypass the Strait of Hormuz, stabilise oil prices and provide avenues for other PSU oil refiners to enter into similar contracts for the import of Russian crude oil.

·         However, China must also be factored into this equation. With the “conspicuous commonalities” of being the largest and third-largest net importers of oil, China and India could consider joint ventures in Russia’s energy sector. China’s competitive technology and India’s huge input and product markets would act as perfect complements for energy engagement. The aggressive nature of China’s strategic culture is likely to be contained by the prospect of a mutually beneficial partnership in Russia.

·         China is building crude oil pipelines in Pakistan and Myanmar to circumvent the persistent ‘Malacca Dilemma’ but India remains a key factor affecting this plan. It could consider “equivalent exchange”, i.e., allowing an India-Russia crude oil pipeline to pass through China and could even share these pipelines.

·         The maritime link between Chennai and Vladivostok would enable cargo transfers in 24 days compared to 40 days it currently takes to transport goods from India to Far East Russia via Europe. The International North-South Transport Corridor (INSTC), an overland route which can connect the India-backed Chabahar Port in Iran to Azerbaijan, St. Petersburg and North Europe via Russia, providing India access to Europe and Central Asia, needs to be accelerated in view of developments in Afghanistan.

·         India’s Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the Eurasian Economic Union – which currently being negotiated – will be hugely impacted by these new routes. With the Northern Sea Route coming into common usage, a vast resource will become more accessible and longer shipping seasons will improve Arctic logistics.

·         India has displayed interest in the geo-politics of the poles with the launch of its Arctic policy earlier this year. Unlike earlier projects where India had to sell to South Korea or locally, the shorter Arctic Northern Sea Route will provide Delhi with the chance to optimise the pricing of crude oil and logistics costs at any time.

·         Notwithstanding disapproval limiting resource development in environmentally sensitive regions, national interest and security should steer India and Russia’s Arctic policies. But even environmental pressure groups can be persuaded by highlighting the fact that Russia’s far north Vostok oil fields will be powered by the extensive use of renewables to produce “green barrels” and that India’s energy deal visualises Russian investments in new initiatives for a gas-based economy.

·         There is a need to intensify and reinforce our traditional friendship, which has witnessed something of a trust deficit of late given India’s growing proximity to the US and Russia’s geo-strategically weighty and economically deep relationship with China. The move to open up alternative sea routes makes economic and strategic sense for both nations and avoids the mistake of leaving Far East Russia entirely to China.

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INTERVIEW: Petroleum products unlikely to gain from India's coal woes, says FIPI

·         India's domestic demand for petroleum products is unlikely to rise sharply due to the current coal shortage as high gas and oil prices will restrict the commercial viability of fuel switching, while the end of the monsoon season will help to revive supply from mines, Federation of Indian Petroleum Industry director general Ravinder Kumar Malhotra has told S&P Global Platts.

·         Even in the case of coal shortages at power plants, the government's direction to state-run GAIL to prioritize gas supplies for power generation would help to normalize the situation in the near future, he added.

·         "I see the impact on petroleum products to be minimal because of the current coal supply situation," Malhotra told Platts in an interview.

·         "We may see some increase in demand for gas, but I don't see the situation to be serious enough for any massive shift to gas-based power generation. Therefore, I don't see demand for petroleum products, such as oil and gas, going up massively because of the coal situation," he added.

·         The global rally in energy prices, including coal, has prompted Indian importers to restrict purchases at a time when domestic supply is normally affected by widespread monsoon rains.

·         Energy price surge pulls down imports

·         India's thermal coal imports in August fell 22% on the year to 8.96 million mt, data from trading firm Iman Resources showed Oct. 4, a sign of India's reluctance to import thermal coal amid high prices even as stockpiles continued to dwindle.

·         India's coal stocks at ports plunged 44% year on year to 8.05 million mt in August, Iman Resources data showed Sept. 30. Coal stocks at the country's power plants slumped 60% on the year to 16.93 million mt in August.

·         The price of Indonesian 5,000 kcal/kg GAR surged 134.59% from $66.5/mt FOB Jan. 4 to a record high $156/mt FOB Oct. 8, Platts data showed.

·         "The monsoon season always creates issues in terms of the transportation and mining of coal. With the monsoon season ending, I would expect the coal supply situation to get better soon," Malhotra said. India's monsoon season runs from June to September.

·         Traders have been saying that some coal-based power plants in India were running below capacity. Market participants expect more such scenarios to play out this quarter if Indian buyers delay

·         S&P Global Platts Analytics says plant load factors at Gujarat coal-fired power plants averaged 45% in August and were estimated to have dropped to below 20% in September. It believes utilities in the western states would shut down coal-fired generation rather than pay higher import coal prices.

·         "Although the central government announced Oct. 9 it would allow import-reliant utilities the ability to sell additional power generation into the open electricity market at higher tariffs, we believe the Indian power market could undergo a similar situation to 2018, particularly in Gujarat, rather than paying these high import prices," said Matthew Boyle, manager of global coal and Asia power analytics at Platts.

·         However, a coal ministry statement on Oct. 10 said that ample coal was available in the country to meet the demand of power plants. It said that due to extended monsoons, transportation from mines was constrained.

·         "We have enough gas in the country to fill up any coal shortages," Malhotra said.

·         Gas not a viable option

·         However, analysts said that diverting a lot of gas to power generation would not be a feasible alternative given the current high global prices.

·         "I think the impact on gas would likely be pretty limited. Spot LNG is likely not going to be feasible as an alternative as it's way more expensive than coal," said Jeff Moore, manager of Asian LNG analytics at Platts.

·         In a market where Asian and European regions continued to compete for winter cargoes, the Platts JKM for November was assessed at $35.210/MMBtu Oct. 11.

·         Coal India expects the issue of low coal stocks at power plants to subside by November or December, according to company officials.

·         The total supply of coal from all sources -- Coal India Limited, Singareni Collieries Company, Captive Coal Mines and imported coal -- was currently estimated at 1.92 million mt, and total consumption at 1.87 million mt, an indication of a gradual build in coal stocks.

·         The power ministry in a statement issued Oct. 9 attributed the depletion of stocks to the revival of the economy as pandemic restrictions eased boosting power demand, heavy monsoons disrupting supplies, bullish import prices and a lack of inventory replenishment ahead of the monsoon.

·         "Compared to 2019, there has been 43.6% reduction in power generation from imported coal, which led to extra demand of 17.4 million mt of domestic coal during April-September," the statement said.

·         Coal India is confident of achieving its production target of 1 billion mt by 2023-24 to meet domestic requirements. Officials said commercial mining would complement the production capacity of Coal India in achieving the target of meeting domestic coal requirements.

·         "The entire situation is a fallout of high world energy prices and seasonal domestic supply constraints that have happened at the same time. We should see signs of the situation getting better very soon," Malhotra said.

Source

 

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OIL discovers natural gas in EKH’s Dangar

·         In a significant development that could potentially become a game changer in terms of revenue generation in the state, the research wing of Oil India Limited (OIL) has discovered natural gas in the state.

·         Mawsynram MLA, Himalaya Shangpliang said on Tuesday that last month, an OIL team had visited Umphniang village near Dangar in East Khasi Hills to collect samples of a reported gas seepage in the area.

·         The area of the seepage lies close to the Indo-Bangladesh border proximal to which the Chhatak gas field is located in the neighbouring country.

·         According to Shangpliang, preliminary laboratory analyses conducted at OIL’s Research & Development Centre at Duliajan, Assam, has indicated the gas to be of thermogenic origin (relating to or involving the production of heat) with high methane content.

·         Shangpliang said that scientists from OIL have stated that further study and analyses would be required prior to any exploration campaign to evaluate the commercial viability of the hydrocarbon presence in the area.

·         “The presence and nature of any further occurrences of similar seepages are being ascertained in the neighbouring areas,” Shangpliang said, adding that a team will conduct further study relating to the amount of gas reserve available in the area.

·         “They are also interested in the oil which is reported to have been found in areas of Telsora A & B and Umsohpieng villages. Another team is coming to visit these three to four villages to collect oil samples,” he said.

·         Independent Director of Oil India Limited, Gagann Jain said that the entire process of conducting the exercise was followed up after Shangpliang revealed the seepage in the Assembly earlier this year.

·         Jain also said that the area where the seepage is located lies near an erstwhile exploration block operated by Oil and Natural Gas Commission in the 1990s.

·         He maintained that the OIL team will have to conduct further studies and analyses to assess the commercial viability of the hydrocarbons.

Source

 

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Green body not to treat gas and oil extraction as mining activity

·         In a move that may have wider implications, the National Board for Wildlife (NBWL) — an apex body that takes calls on conservation issues — has decided not to treat extraction of natural gas or oil as a mining activity under existing law on mines and minerals regulation in green areas.

·         Taking a call on projects near Trishna Wildlife Sanctuary in Tripura, the standing committee of the board in its last meeting recommended the proposals for diversion of forest land by going ahead with the opinion of state advocate general and solicitor general of India.

·         Minutes of the meeting, put out by environment ministry in public domain on October 8, show that the SG in its opinion, sought by ONGC, has expressed that extraction of natural gas and oil (which includes exploration and development) is not a mining activity when compared to a traditional open cast mining carried out upon large tract of land and that it can’t be considered as mining in terms of the Supreme Court’s August 2006 order on the issue.

·         However, experts have noted that the move would be disastrous for the environment and wildlife around national parks and sanctuaries.

Source

 

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Govt says volatile crude oil prices pose concerns for economy

·         Volatility in the prices of crude oil, edible oils and metal products pose concerns for India's economy, though inflation is expected to ease in coming months, a government report said on Monday.

·         "India is well-placed on the path to swift recovery with growth impulses visibly transmitted to all sectors of the economy," a report released by the finance ministry said.

·         The Reserve Bank of India's monetary policy committee left policy interest rates unchanged on Friday, lowering its retail inflation projections to 5.3% from 5.7% for the current fiscal year ending in March 2022, while warning about the risk of higher fuel prices.

Source

 

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Petrol, diesel price rise pause after a week of increase

·         Petrol and diesel price rise went on pause on Tuesday much to the relief of consumers faced with unprecedented increase in auto fuel prices for the past one month that has taken retail rates to record high levels across the country.

·         Accordingly, in the national capital, petrol continues to be sold at Rs 104.44 per litre and diesel at Rs 93.17 per litre, the same levels as Monday.

·         In India's financial capital, Mumbai, where petrol became costlier by 29 paise per litre on Monday, its retail rate remained static at Rs 110.41 on Tuesday, the highest across all the four metro cities. Diesel also costs Rs 101.03 for one litre in Mumbai.

·         The price pause on Tuesday has come after fuel prices rose consistently for the past seven days taking the rates to all-time high levels. The prices of petrol and diesel remained steady on October 4, but saw a hike after that.

·         Diesel prices have increased on 15 out of the last 18 days before Tuesday's pause taking up its retail price by Rs 4.55 per litre in Delhi. The prices of diesel has increased between 20-30 paisa per litre so far, but since Wednesday it has been increasing by 35 paise per litre.

·         With diesel price rising sharply, the fuel is now available at over Rs 100 a litre in several parts of the country. This dubious distinction was earlier available to petrol that had crossed Rs 100 a litre-mark across the country a few months earlier.

·         Petrol prices had maintained stability since September 5, but oil companies finally raised the pump prices last week. Petrol prices have also risen on 12 of the previous 14 days taking up its pump price by Rs 3.25 per litre.

·         OMCs had preferred to maintain their watch prices on global oil situation before making any revision in prices. This is the reason why petrol prices were not revised for the last three weeks. But extreme volatility in global oil price movement has now pushed OMCs to effect the increase.

·         Crude price has been on a surge rising over three year high level of over $ 83.5 a barrel now. Since September 5, when both petrol and diesel prices were revised, the price of petrol and diesel in the international market is higher by around $9-10 per barrel as compared to average prices during August.

·         Under the pricing formula adopted by oil companies, rates of petrol and diesel are to be reviewed and revised by them on a daily basis. The new prices become effective from 6 a.m.

·         The daily review and revision of prices is based on the average price of benchmark fuel in the international market in the preceding 15-days, and foreign exchange rates.

·         But, the fluctuations in global oil prices have prevented OMCs to follow this formula in totality and revisions are now being made with longer gaps. This has also prevented companies from increasing fuel prices whenever there is a mismatch between globally arrived and pump price of fuel.

Source

 

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Coal(8 News Items)

PMO reviews coal supply, power availability situation

·         Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on Tuesday reviewed the coal supply and power generation scenario as the government looks at ways to defuse the energy crisis being faced by several states.

·         At the meeting over coal shortage at power plants which have led to blackouts in some states, Power Secretary Alok Kumar and Coal Secretary AK Jain made a presentation on coal and power availability, sources said, adding that ways to increase transportation of coal were also discussed during the meeting.

·         The coal ministry has been asked to ramp up the supply of coal while railways has been asked to make available rakes to transport the fuel to power plants, the sources said.

·         The shortage of coal — which makes up around 70 per cent of India’s electricity mix — has forced rotational power cuts in states from Rajasthan to Kerala.

·         About two-thirds of the coal-fired power plants had stockpiles of a week or less but the coal ministry said, “any fear of disruption in the power supply is entirely misplaced.”

·         States have been forced to buy power from exchanges at high rates to meet demand.

·         To defuse the crisis, the Union power ministry has issued instructions ranging from asking states not to sell power at high prices on the exchange to ordering state electricity generators to ensure adequate supplies.

·         State-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) has been asked to augment the coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes per day this week and to further scale it up to 1.7 million tonnes daily after October 20.

·         The coal dispatched by CIL to the power sector on Monday stood at 1.615 million tonnes.

·         Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi said the government is making full efforts to meet the coal demand of power producers. “We at the ministry and CIL are making full efforts to meet the coal demand… Yesterday (Monday), we supplied around 1.95 million tonnes of coal. Around 1.6 million tonnes from CIL and the remaining from Singareni Collieries Company Ltd. All put together, 1.95 million tonnes we have supplied”.

·         Speaking at the launch event of the third tranche of the auction for commercial mining of coal, the minister said, “from October 20-21 or before that, we will try to reach two million tonnes (supply), which will again be a record”.

·         CIL has around 22 days of stock and supplies will be ramped up as monsoon rains in coal belt that led to the flooding of mines have receded.

·         Responding to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s warning of a potential power crisis in the national capital, state-owned NTPC tweeted saying that distribution companies in Delhi were taking only 70 per cent of the power that it was made available to them.

Source

 

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Coal Crisis: 10 States Including Maharashtra, Punjab & Bengal Owe CIL Nearly 2,000 Bn

·         At least 10 states including Punjab, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and Rajasthan owe Coal India Limited (CIL) over Rs 19,9000 crore in outstanding dues despite being reminded of it multiple times, top government sorces have told CNN-News18, adding that despite this the government-owned coal mining and refining corporation maintained its supply to these states.

·         Delay in monsoon and then an extended rainfall were some of the factors which impacted the coal supply that lead to the shortage in the country, sources said on Tuesday.

·         As per the records, despite the outstanding dues and the fact that coal intake was being regulated by these states, CIL has maintained supply to these states.

·         Sources also said that despite several reminders from the Centre, the state governments did not increase their coal stocks. As per the official records, a communication regarding this was made by the Coal Ministry to the states in January, April, and May this year. Moreover, a letter on the same was also written to the states by Union Power Minister RK Singh.

·         Arvind Kejriwal-led government in Delhi, which put a complete ban on coal-based power plants in 2019, created a panic that there is a shortage in coal supply. Similarly, the Punjab government also shut power plants but did not make an alternative arrangement for power supply in the state, said sources.

·         Another factor that led to this crisis was the three-four times hike in coal prices in the international markets and thus those plants, which would import coal, press the demand onto the domestic supply. A sudden increase in the demand of coal supply up to 1,94 million was a result of demand for domestic coal.

·         Sources also informed that some states, which had mines, have not operated them despite all the clearances given by the central government. Such as the mine in Jharkhand has been waiting for the state government’s clearance for over a year. The Jharkhand mine has a capacity of 34,000 million tonnes. Rajasthan is another state which has not been given clearance for mining.

·         As far as the transportation of coal is concerned, it has been addressed effectively by the Centre and Railways has deployed more than 350 rakes for the same. At present, the coal supply has a stock for about five days time and within the next fortnight also the stock supply will be increased to about 15 days of stock, sources added.

·         The supply maintained this year is 99.33 million in comparison to about 75 million last year, the official records showed.

·         Some of the states were regulating coal and also had huge outstanding dues to be paid to CIL. Letters from various levels like the Coal Minister Pralhad Joshi, Secretary (Coal) and also from CIL were written to these states regarding the issue. Here’s about these states:

·         • Rajasthan: Number of letters were written, from the last quarter of FY 21 and first quarter of FY 22, to the Rajasthan government, State Energy Minister, Chief Minister, requesting it not to regulate coal intake and build sufficient coal stock and it has also been requested for increasing the supply from their own captive coal block. The outstanding dues of Rajasthan are to the tune of Rs 278.47 crore. Moreover, during the last quarter of FY 2021, Rajasthan had requested to restrict supply coal due to problems in handling and storage. They have been allotted two coal blocks from which they have been asked to increase supply to their power plant.

·         • Maharashtra: Letters were written to the Maharashtra government and its Chief Minister requesting intervention for directing power companies to confirm availability of coal before importing, maintaining sufficient stock and also clearing outstanding dues. The outstanding dues of MAHAGENCO are to the tune of Rs 2619.29 crore.

·         • Andhra Pradesh: Letters were written to Andhra Pradesh government and its Chief Minister requesting intervention for directing power companies to confirm availability of coal before importing, maintaining sufficient stock and also clearing outstanding dues. The outstanding dues are to the tune of Rs 256.14 crore.

·         • Tamil Nadu: Letters were written to the Tamil Nadu government and the Chief Minister requesting intervention for directing power companies to confirm availability of coal before importing, maintaining sufficient stock and also clearing outstanding dues. The outstanding dues of TANGEDCO are to the tune of Rs 1087.27 crore.

·         • West Bengal: Letters were written to the West Bengal government and the Chief Minister requesting intervention for directing power companies to confirm availability of coal before importing, maintaining sufficient stock and also clearing outstanding dues. The outstanding dues are to the tune of Rs 1958.6 crore. They have been allotted four coal blocks from which they have been asked to increase supply to their power plant.

·         • Punjab: Letters were written to the Punjab government and the Chief Minister requesting intervention for directing power companies to confirm availability of coal before importing, maintaining sufficient stock and also clearing outstanding dues. The outstanding dues of PSPCL are to the tune of Rs 119.52 crore.

·         • Chhattisgarh: Letters were written to the Chhattisgarh government and the Chief Minister Chhattisgarh requesting intervention for directing power companies to maintain comfortable coal stock and also to clear outstanding dues. The outstanding dues are to the tune of Rs 127.33 crore. They have been allotted Gare Palma Sector 3 coal block from which they have been asked to increase supply to their power plant.

Source

 

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Why coal shortage despite improved production in coal-dependant India?

·         India produced 12 per cent more coal in the first half of the current financial year, compared to the same period last year. The 2021 output is nearly six per cent more than the pre-pandemic year of 2019-20.

·         Besides, coal dispatches between April-September this year went up 20 per cent more than the corresponding period of 2020, and 13 per cent compared to the year before that.

·         WHY THE CRUNCH THEN?

·         It is because the demand for domestic coal has outstripped the supply by quite a margin.

·         A balance is possible if and when the global supply chain -- both in terms of prices as well as availability -- improves.

·         The present crisis at India's power plants originated in August and September 2021. Power demands in these two months went up by 17 per cent compared to the same period in 2019.

·         Secondly, according to a central government statement, the share of coal-based generation during this period also increased from 61.91 per cent in 2019 to 66.35 per cent in 2021.

·         "Consequently, the total coal consumption in the month of August-September, 2021 has increased by 18 per cent in comparison to the corresponding period in 2019," the government said.

·         Between March and September this year, the price of imported coal has gone up by an unprecedented 200 per cent, according to official data.

·         As a result, imported supplies have shrunk by an unprecedented 44 per cent in August-September alone.

·         Plunging imports put an additional burden of nearly 17 million tonnes of coal on domestic producers.

·         A combination of factors has pushed global coal prices into a zone never seen before.

·         Unseasonal rains in Indonesia, Covid-induced production cuts in Australia, and rising power demands in China have ensured a once-in-a-lifetime bull run in coal prices.

·         China consumes nearly half of the coal produced globally and Indonesia and Australia happen to be two of the largest exporters.

·         India sources 43 per cent of its imported coal from Indonesia and 26 per cent from Australia.

·         Most of India's coal imports are used by power generating thermal plants.

·         According to reports, China produced 13 per cent more electricity in July and imported 16 per cent more coal in the same months compared to last year. All of that pushed prices globally.

·         Cost-conscious Indian power producers found it unviable to generate electricity on expensive imported coal.

·         Rating agency ICRA estimates that because of rising prices of imported coal since April "the fuel cost of generation for imported coal-based units at coastal locations in India is estimated to have increased by 45-50 per cent".

·         Since power distribution continues to be a regulated sector in India, the chances of passing the burden to the end consumer are minimal.

·         As a result, domestic power producers went for import substitution, putting pressure on domestic coal supply chains.

·         Incidentally, the demand for coal has also gone up because other sources of generating power -- natural gas, for instance -- have become even costlier.

·         The price of natural gas, too, has increased nearly 100 per cent in 2021 alone. This has hampered the plan to grow the share of renewable energy as well.

Source

 

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Power cuts in Rajasthan amid coal shortage: official

·         Rajasthan has been forced to resort to power cuts on a rotational basis across the state as it faces a shortage of coal for generating electricity, a top official said on Tuesday.

·         Additional chief secretary Subodh Agarwal said currently 9,317 MW of power is available in the state while the average demand is 10,683 MW. He added the maximum average demand is 12,200 MW. Agrawal said the state has again written to the Union coal secretary seeking an increase in the supply of coal. He added chief minister Ashok Gehlot has been continuously reviewing the situation and as a result, the situation has started improving.

·         Agrawal said due to their efforts, 15 to 16 coal rakes were being dispatched to the state. “A total of 16 rakes were dispatched on October 10 compared to 15 the previous day. Around 21 rakes of coal are required per day for all the thermal units in the state.”

·         Union home minister Amit Shah met coal minister Pralhad Joshi and power and renewable energy minister Raj Kumar Singh on Monday and directed them to ensure uninterrupted fuel supplies to power plants. The meeting was held amid concerns of some states that depleted coal stocks at power generation plants may lead to potential blackouts.

Source

 

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Minister says Maharashtra facing 4,000 MW power shortage, blames Coal India for fuel supply crunch

·         Maharashtra Energy Minister Nitin Raut on Tuesday said the state is facing a shortage of 3,500 to 4,000 MW of electricity supply and blamed "mismanagement and lack of planning" on part of central PSU Coal India Ltd (CIL) for the situation.

·         He said Coal India, a Maharatna PSU and the largest producer of the fossil fuel, has failed to ensure timely supply of coal for thermal power generation plants in the state.

·         Speaking to reporters, Raut said, "Maharashtra is facing a shortage of electricity supply between 3,500 and 4,000 MW. It is due to Coal India's unorganized functioning and lack of planning which has resulted in Maharashtra facing a severe shortage of coal."

·         The Congress minister also accused Coastal Gujarat Power Ltd and JSW of not supplying power to Maharashtra despite having agreements to this effect.

·         He said, "Coastal Gujarat Power Ltd and JSW have agreements with state power utilities to supply 760 MW and 240 MW, respectively.

·         "Both the companies have not been supplying power to Maharashtra, creating a shortage of 1,000 MW. We have long-term agreements with these companies and they do have enough stock, but still power is not being supplied to Maharashtra."

·         According to the latest coal-stock data of the 135 plants with over 165 GW of installed generation capacity monitored by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), as many 70 plants are categorised as super-critical stock, or having less than four days of fuel, on October 10, 2021, compared to 64 a week ago on October 3, 2021.

·         The Central government has asked CIL to augment coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes (MT) per day around the Durga Puja period and to further scale it to 1.7 MT per day after October 20.

·         The coal ministry on Sunday assured sufficient dry fuel is available in the country to meet the demand of electricity generating plants and said any fear of disruption in power supply is "entirely misplaced".

·         Officials had attributed shortage of coal to disruption of transport due to heavy rains in mining areas.

Source

 

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Modi government responsible for current shortage of coal in country: NCP

·         The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) on Tuesday alleged the Modi government was responsible for the current shortage of coal in the country, which has caused a shortfall of the fuel supply to several power plants.

·         Talking to reporters, NCP spokesperson Nawab Malik said many power plants are not operational due to the shortage of coal. Despite importing the fuel, the shortfall remains. This is also leading to spending the foreign exchange, he said.

·         During the tenure of the erstwhile UPA government, the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had come up with a coal policy keeping in mind the electricity requirements of the country in the future, he said.

·         But the BJP, then in the opposition, alleged a coal scam and the policy had to be rolled back, said Malik, a senior minister in the Maharashtra government. Eventually, coal mines were given to some entities, but mining has not yet started there, he said, adding that despite the availability of coal, it is not being mined, the NCP leader said

·         The Modi government is responsible for the shortage of coal," he said.

·         As per the government data, the number of non-pit head plants with less than four days of dry fuel stock (supercritical stock) increased to 70 this Sunday compared to 64 a week ago on October 3.

·         According to the latest coal-stock data of the 135 plants with over 165 GW of installed generation capacity monitored by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), as many 70 plants are categorised as super-critical stock or having less than four days of fuel on October 10, 2021, compared to 64 a week ago on October 3, 2021.

·         The Central government has asked state-owned Coal India Ltd (CIL) to augment the coal supply to power producers to 1.55-1.6 million tonnes (MT) per day around the Durga Puja period and to further scale it to 1.7 MT per day after October 20.

·         The coal ministry on Sunday assured that sufficient dry fuel is available in the country to meet the demand of electricity generating plants and stressed that any fear of disruption in the power supply is “entirely misplaced”.

·         Officials had attributed the shortage of coal to the disruption of transport due to heavy rains in mining areas.

Source

 

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CIL must get its act together, discoms too

·         Given Union power minister RK Singh expects the problem of coal shortage to persist for up to six months, it is just as well the government is looking to step up imports. In April last year, the government had decided to go slow on imports of coal but power plants can now use up to 10% imported coal. That is a costly proposition, but the extra supply will come in handy. In the interim, it makes sense to redirect stocks of coal to states where the supplies are dwindling. Stocks at over 100 thermal power plants have been depleted. In the past 10 days or so, as much as 140 GW of capacity has been running with coal stocks for six days or less; typically, these plants would hold 15 days to a month’s worth of inventory.

·         With electricity demand up sharply, consumption of coal increased by 18% in August-September over the comparable period in 2019. Unfortunately, heavy rains in September hit mining activity, and to tide over the shortage, imports would be needed. Coal India Limited (CIL) has confirmed shipments of coal will increase post the Dusshera festival later this week to 1.6 million tonnes a day. But it needs to ramp up production and productivity over the next few years so as to be able to cater for growing electricity consumption. Production was up just 6% y-o-y in H1FY22. There were clear indications demand for power was rising, after Q1 recorded a more than 16% y-o-y growth, and CIL needed to have been better prepared since it supplies roughly 80% of the requirements of thermal stations.

·         While supplies are short, it is true several states are short of funds and are unable to pay for the coal supplies. Indeed, some part of the crisis can be traced back to distressed state-run discoms, the weakest link in the electricity chain. Discoms have been delaying or defaulting on payments, leaving the gencos in trouble. For years, they have been getting away by not paying, but now CIL has started cutting supplies to those state-run power plants whose dues are high. Supplies have been lowered to state-owned generators in Uttar Pradesh with a capacity of 5.5 GW, in Andhra Pradesh with a capacity of 5 GW and in West Bengal (3.4GW). Moreover, Rajasthan too has seen supplies of coal regulated for 2.7 GW of state-run generating capacity because of unpaid bills. Among the states that owe coal companies money are also Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh. Indeed, in a recent interview with a television channel, Union power secretary Alok Kumar had observed that supplies would also depend on timely payments to coal producers. Kumar said it had been made clear to discoms they needed to shape up and settle their dues to the gencos, else they will find themselves in a spot. That rap on the knuckles is well-deserved; for too long have discoms got away with delinquent behaviour. CIL’s receivables had gone up to just short of Rs 20,000 crore in March 2021 before coming down to Rs 17,100 crore in end-July. Recently, the power ministry invoked the seldom-used tripartite agreements (TPAs) against Jharkhand, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu to recover power supply dues from their discoms to NTPC and others. Meanwhile, CIL also needs to buck up; it would be a pity if the economy’s recovery is stalled because of power shortages. Over the longer term, India must work to generate more electricity from clean fuels.

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India allows power plants to blend imported coal with local grade

·         India on Tuesday allowed power producers to expedite imports of coal to use for up to 10% of blends with the domestic grade to meet increased power demand in a move that could push up already high global prices.

·         Asia's third-largest economy is facing large-scale outages as several power plants have low coal inventories amid a sharp spike in global energy prices.

·         So far power plants that use local coal import little.

·         The note said supply from state-run Coal India Ltd is not commensurate with the surge in electricity consumption, leading to a change in government policy on coal imports.

·         India's power demand has been rising with the revival of the economy after the lifting of COVID 19-induced restrictions. (Reporting by Sudarshan Varadhan; editing by Jason Neely)

Source

 

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Daily Newsletter 2021

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Tuesday, October 12, 2021

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Infraline Comprehensive Power , Oil & Gas & Coal Only Detailed Newsletter

What’s New

Acts and Regulations

§  RoP on Interlocutory Application for grant of registration to establish and operate a Power Exchange. Pranurja Solution Limited (PSL)

§  Order on Extension of Pilot on Security Constrained Economic Dispatch (SCED)

§  RoP on Petition under Section 66 of the Electricity Act, 2003 read with Regulation 7 of the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (Power Market) Regulations, 2010 for approval of introduction of the Green Day Ahead Contract in Day Ahead Market segment at Indian Energy Exchange Limited. Indian Energy Exchange Limited, PXIL

§  RoP on Petition under Section 79 of the Electricity Act, 2003 read with Article 13 of the Power Purchase Agreements dated 7.8.2008 executed between Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam Limited/ Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam Limited and Adani Power Limited. Adani Power (Mundra) Limited (APMuL)

§  RoP on Petition under Regulation 21 of the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (Power Market) Regulations, 2010, as amended or substituted, for grant of registration to establish and operate a Power Exchange and permit the Petitioner to commence the operation of power exchange. Pranurja Solution Limited (PSL)

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Performance of State Discom

New!

Power

RK Singh reads the riot act to Tata Power on blackout bogey

Power minister R K Singh on Sunday read the riot act to Tata Power and his Delhi counterpart Satyendar Jain for raising the bogey of imminent load-sheddings citing coal shortage at power plants and warned the Capital's discoms.

'The shortage of coal at power plants is different from shortage of coal in the country'

India's thermal power stations are reportedly operating with coal stocks at alarmingly low levels. On October 6, as much as 133 GW of India's monitored 165 GW coal base capacity operated with low inventory.

§  Penalise thermal power plants for not keeping coal stock: Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu

§  Explained: Why states are running out of power despite India producing record coal

§  Amid concern over ‘electricity crisis’, Shah meets Power and Coal ministers

§  Coal Crisis: Power Cuts In Bengaluru on October 12, Says State-Run BESCOM

§  India faces electricity crisis as coal supplies run critically low

§  Nitish Kumar admits to power crisis, says Bihar spending extra money to purchase electricity

§  Electricity charges in State highest in South India: TDP

§  Power Ministry Mandates Energy Accounting Among DISCOMs

§  Will Budgetary Support to promote Hydro Electric (HE) Power encourage DISCOMS to purchase power from HEPs?

[Poll Question]

Projects Update

Project Name

Promoter

Capacity

State

Dardu Hydro Power Project

KVK-ECI Hydro Energy Private Limited

60 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Tidding II Hydro Power Project

Sai Krishnodaya Industries Pvt. Ltd.

75 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Jameri Hydro Power Project

KSK Jameri Hydro Power Pvt. Ltd.

60 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Attunli Hydro Power Project

Attunli Hydro Electric Power Company

680 MW

Arunachal Pradesh

Kolodyne Hydro Power Project Stage-2

NTPC

460 MW

Mizoram

Renewable Energy

 

Government may defer duty on solar gear imports, extend project deadlines

Domestic solar companies allege that Chinese companies are taking advantage of the proposed 40% customs duty on solar equipment from April next year, making Indian firms pay more than 1.5 times of the originally signed contract.

REC opens global export opportunity for RIL's solar business

REC is the only company globally to commercialise tech that consumes 75 per cent less power than the Chinese companies.

§  Madras HC dismisses plea against establishing bio-gas plant

§  Chandigarh: Rs 2.5 crore solar power plant on N-choe to be ready in 6 months

§  CEL Issues Tender for 147 MW Decentralized Solar Power Gen Systems

§  RUMSL Floats Consultancy Tender for 950MW Solar+Battery Park in MP

§  Oakridge Rooftops Secures Funding From German Crowdinvesting Platform To Ramp Up Solar Projects

§  Jubilant Ingrevia to Buy Solar Power from AMP Energy’s 15.5 MW Open Access Project

§  EPC Tenders Issued for 20 MW of Solar Projects in West Bengal

§  Gautam Solar features in MNRE’s Approved list of Module Manufacturers with the largest product range

§  Does Anti-Dumping probe benefit Domestic Solar Manufacturers in India?[Poll Question]

Projects Update

Project Name

Plant Owner

Capacity (MW)

State

Adani Chitrakoot One Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Chitrakoot One

25

Adani Kutchh One Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Kutchh One Limited

150

Gujarat

Shahjahanpur and Budaun Solar Plant

Adani Solar Energy Four Private Ltd

100

Uttar Pradesh

1200 MW ISTS Connected Projects (ISTS-V)

SBE Renewables Sixteen Pvt. Ltd.

180

Rajasthan

1200 MW ISTS Connected Projects (ISTS-V)

GRT Jewellers (India) Pvt. Ltd.

150

Tamil Nadu

Oil & Gas

 

NTPC, Gujarat Gas 'blend' hydrogen for homes

At a time when leading Indian companies like Reliance Industries Ltd and Adani Group are betting big on renewables with a special focus on hydrogen production, Indian government-owned National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) in association with Gujarat Gas is also planning an ambitious project to blend hydrogen with piped natural gas.

Petrol costs more than Rs 100 in almost all state capitals

On Monday morning, it crossed the Rs 100-a-litre mark in Delhi, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Tamil Nadu, Ladakh, Punjab and Bihar.

§  Do you think Natural gas, diesel and petrol should have been included under GST?

[Poll Question]

§  Need to boost biofuel production to reduce dependence on import of crude oil: Gadkari

§  Diesel hits Rs 100/litre mark in Kerala, Karnataka

§  India Must Look to Russia for a Mutually Beneficial Energy Partnership

§  Indian Oil defers maintenance shutdown of units at Haldia - sources

§  Union Minister Rameswar Teli felicitates successful candidates of Skill Development Institute, Guwahati

Oil & Gas Technical

New!

 

WTI crude prices hit $81 on booming global oil demand

Crude topped $81 a barrel as the global power crunch boosts demand for oil ahead of winter.

Oil above $80 spurs a Permian shale drilling revival

Oil prices around $80 a barrel are once again spurring a revival of shale drilling in America’s biggest oil field, where production is expected to return to pre-pandemic highs within weeks.

§  World’s largest LNG exporter unhappy with high natural gas prices

§  Halliburton And VoltaGrid enter multi-year contract with Aethon Energy for electric fracturing solution

§  UK grants North Sea subsea carbon storage license in pursuit of COP26 goals

§  DOF Subsea and Ocean Floor Geophysics Inc. form strategic alliance for global AUV services

§  Apache eliminates routine gas flaring onshore U.S., completing ESG goal early

Daily International Coal Prices

New!

Coal

'The shortage of coal at power plants is different from shortage of coal in the country'

India's thermal power stations are reportedly operating with coal stocks at alarmingly low levels. On October 6, as much as 133 GW of India's monitored 165 GW coal base capacity operated with low inventory.

Explained: Why states are running out of power despite India producing record coal

A post-pandemic surge in manufacturing has spiked demand for power and caught power producers off guard to the point that India is staring at a major power crisis.

§  Will Commercial Coal Mining attract global players to invest in India?

[Poll Question]

§  Coal Crisis: Power Cuts In Bengaluru on October 12, Says State-Run BESCOM

§  India faces electricity crisis as coal supplies run critically low

§  Coal India arm provides 76.6percent coal to power producers in current month

§  GOCL Corp soars on bagging Rs 592 cr order from Coal India

§  Coal India goes digital in a bid to improve transparency

§  CIL says coal supply to improve further post Durga Puja

Roads

 

For speedy land compensation, NHAI to switch to new system

In its bid to fast track disbursement of compensation for land acquisition to property owners, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) will now shift to a new system where the amount will be transferred directly to the beneficiaries’ accounts through the Public Finance Management System (PFMS).

Ashoka Buildcon update on NHAI road project in Jharkhand