Energy efficiency to cut power forecast by 60GW
According to the Union Power Ministry, the power demand for the period 2017-22 will be 20% less at 239 GW due to the energy efficiency and power saving devices. The ministry, in 2011, had predicted the power demand in the country to grow from 140-150 GW to 298 GW by 2022. However, the new estimates suggest that the demand will rise to 239 GW.
Power capacity vs demand in India
Currently, India has a power demand of 140-150 GW (Giga Watts) against which the total installed capacity is 289 GW.
Drivers of power growth
In the coming years, the power demand of the nation is expected to go up owing to various factors. The most important among these are - electrification of all villages by 2019, 24x7 uninterrupted power to all, electrification of more railway lines. increasing emphasis on electric vehicles, etc. Improving living standards` of people due to economic development will also propel the power demand.
India consumes much less power than worlds average
The per capita power consumption in India is around 1,000 units against a global average of 3,000 units.
Reasons for lower power demand growth
The government has initiated various schemes for promoting the efficient usage of power in the country. Ujawal Discom Assurance Yojana (UDAY), which aims to turnaround the power distributors mandates that state utilities cut their transmission and distribution losses. The UJALA (Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All) will reduce peak electricity demand by 20 GW through the distribution of energy efficient LED lamps.
More devices to be made energy efficient
On the lines of UJALA, the government is working on a similar scheme for energy-efficient agricultural pumps, fans, ACs, etc. through power distribution companies.
Energy intensity may further reduce
More efficient usage of power may further reduce India's energy intensity (energy units required to produced 1 unit of GDP) by 0.91. A figure of under 1 indicates efficiency.
Renewable energy will help reduce operating load
The country also plans to add 175 GW of renewable energy by 2022. This may cause the power plants to operate at 55-60% of the capacity during the period 2017-2022, which according to experts is the international average. Further, the ministry projects the power generation in the country to grow at 7.2% for the period 2017-22 against an assumed economic growth rate of 8%.