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Power crisis due to shortage of coal and delay in payment

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Power crisis due to shortage of coal and delay in payment

India’s power shortage crisis has deepened in recent days due to heatwaves, coal shortages and payment delays.

The total power shortfall in India has reached 623 million units (MU) in the last one week.

Reason for power shortage

  • Heat-wave conditions have increased the demand for energy-intensive cooling infrastructure.
  • States do not want to buy power from the open market due to high prices and competition among states.
  • Thermal power plants usually face shortage of coal during monsoon. But, at present the coal crisis has started due to short supply of coal and lack of wagons to transport coal to the plants.
  • Due to the Russia-Ukraine crisis, worldwide coal prices have increased by 250% in the past few months.

Contribution of coal in electricity generation

  • Coal-fired power plants meet about 70% of India’s electricity demand.
  • India is the second largest coal producing country in the world. As of the year 2020, India has the 5th largest coal reserves in the world.

Classification of Coal:

  • Anthracite: This is the best grade of coal. It contains 80 to 95 percent carbon. It is found in small quantities in Jammu and Kashmir.
  • Bituminous: It contains 60 to 80 percent carbon content. It has very less moisture. This coal is found in Jharkhand, West Bengal, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh.
  • Lignite: It contains 40 to 55 percent carbon content. It is found in Rajasthan, Lakhimpur (Assam) and Tamil Nadu.
  • Peat Coal: The carbon content in it ranges from 50% to 60%. Burning it releases more ash and smoke. It is the lowest grade coal.

Source – The Hindu

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