The Petroleum Ministry has allocated additional natural gas from Reliance Industries' eastern offshore gas fields to three power plants to meet electricity deficit in northern states reeling under drought.
Oil Minister Murli Deora this week approved a 'fall-back' or temporary allocation of about 3.7 million standard cubic meters per day of KG-D6 gas to Lanco's Kondapalli power plant in Andhra Pradesh, Utran plant in Gujarat and Pragati Power in Delhi and supplies are likely to begin in a week to 10 days.
"We raised the issue of additional gas to power plants at a meeting called by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee (on August 25), and Deora that very evening called a meeting of officials at his residence and approved the additional allocation," Power Secretary H S Brahma said in New Delhi.
The gas would help generate about 800 MW of additional electricity and help bridge the shortfall in hydro power generation caused by insufficient rains.
Brahma said in all 10 mmscmd of gas is needed at power plants operating below capacity or about to be commissioned. Of this 3.7 mmscmd has been allocated. "If we get another 7 mmscmd, we can generate 900 MW of additional power."
KG-D6 gas would help the Power Ministry meet its 100-day agenda of adding 5,200 MW generation by mid-September.
"We have added 4,000 MW already and we will definitely meet the target," he said.