Coal block blow fails to shake power-rich Madhya Pradesh

  • Manoj Ahuja, Hindustan Times, Indore
  • Updated: Sep 25, 2014 22:00 IST

The Supreme Court’s recent decision to cancel coal block allocations is not going to adversely affect the power surplus Madhya Pradesh unlike other states.

The Supreme Court had cancelled 204 coal block allocations sanctioned during 1993- 2009. But it spared 12 coal blocks belonging to ultra mega power plants and one each of NTPC and SAIL.

According to officials, Madhya Pradesh would lose only 261 MW of power post-SC verdict. However, since Reliance Power is among the safe companies, which have been spared from losing the coal blocks by the Supreme Court, the state will continue to draw 1,237 MW from Reliance Power's UMPP in Sasan, about 413 km from Indore.

According to the top power officials, the daily power availability in the state is around 7,500 MW, which is already 1,000 MW more than the peak power demand.

MP Power Management Company Ltd managing director Manu Shrivastava says, "There will be no significant impact on power availability in Madhya Pradesh as the Sasan project will remain unaffected.” The state has 37.5% share from the Sasan project, which is currently generating 3,300 MW power.

Shrivastava says the state would lose about 247 MW power from the JP Nigri power plant in Sidhi and 14 MW from BLA power plant in Narsinghpur.

Besides, the loss of 261 MW power would occur after six months as the Supreme Court has given six months’ time to the companies extracting coal from the operational blocks to wind up operations, said officials That more units of existing power projects were slated to be commissioned in the coming months, was another relief, they said.

But, the decision to cancel coal blocks is bound to raise the production cost as the power firms would have to import coal to keep up the production, which may slightly make power dearer in the state, sources say, citing the case of Essar Power project in Singrauli.

The 600 MW power depends on Mahan coal block supplies. But, that stands cancelled after the apex court decision.

Madhya Pradesh has around 21 coal blocks, of which 10 are operated by the state mining corporation.

MP power facts

Total power availability: 7,500 MW
Peak power consumption: 6,500 MW
Sasan UMPP power generation: 3,300 MW
MP's share of Sasan project: 37.5%

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