Heatwaves push up power demand in Delhi
Heatwaves pushed up Delhi’s energy demand by at least 25%, a new study done by the Centre for Science and Environment has said.
The average energy demand during the heatwave in 2019 was 25% higher than the average demand in the preceding week. The demand dipped after the heat spell. Similar trends were observed in 2018.
This year, Delhi encountered an unusually long and dry heat spell in June, not encountered since 2011. The temperature at the India Meteorological Department’s (IMD) Safdarjung observatory, taken to be a representative of Delhi’s weather, touched 45.6 degrees Celsius, the highest temperature recorded after 2003.
At Palam, it touched 48 degrees, which is the second highest day temperature the airport area had seen after May 1998 when the mercury shot up to 48.4 degrees Celsius.
The study analysed data of Delhi’s electricity consumption over the past eight years (2010 – 2018). Long-term electricity consumption patterns in Delhi shows that electricity consumption during summer starts to rise exponentially, only after the daily heat index (a combination of heat and humidity) crosses the 31-32 degree mark.
“If the growing discomfort due to increasing heat is not addressed with wide-ranging architectural design solutions, mixed use of cooling approaches (including less energy-intensive devices like fans) and improved energy efficiency of mechanical cooling methods, energy security and climate change mitigation efforts will be deeply undermined,” said Anumita Roychowdhury, CSE executive director (research and advocacy).
The study says heatwaves in Indian cities have intensified because of heat island effects, increase in air pollution, and heat exhaust from traffic and air-conditioning. Delhi’s urban areas experience, on an average, 2.3 more heatwave days than rural areas every summer.
According to power utilities in the national capital, cooling load (ACs, fans and coolers) is the main reason behind the increase in Delhi’s power load.
“In fact, according to estimates, almost 50% of Delhi’s power demand in summers is because of the cooling load. Air-conditioning can account for 30%-50% of a company’s or household’s annual energy cost,” said a BSES spokesperson.
The CSE study suggested that urban heat action and mitigation plans should be developed to reduce the urban heat island effect. It suggested adopting cooling designs through effective use of shading and ventilation to reduce the use of air conditioners and coolers.
The Karnataka High Court has quashed the notice of ₹69 lakh in betterment charge the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) demanded from the 150-year-old Good Shepherd Convent here. The school sought to build an additional four floors on an existing 100-year-old building on its campus. But the BBMP calculated betterment charge on the entire 23 acres of land. The Good Shepard Society/ School stands on 23 acres “in the heart of the city.”
Senior politician Basavaraj Horatti, who recently resigned as the Chairman of Karnataka Legislative Council and MLC, on Wednesday joined the BJP. He joined the party in the presence of C C Patil among others, former Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar, BJP national General Secretary C T Ravi, Ministers R Ashoka, Govind Karjol, Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai. He is likely to be fielded as the BJP's candidate for the upcoming MLC polls from West Teachers' constituency.
In a suspected case of suicide, a 32-year-old IT professional was found dead inside his rented apartment in a group housing society here, police said on Wednesday. The body was found hanging from a rope inside the fourth-floor apartment of the society in Sector 74, under Sector 113 police station limits, on Tuesday night, officials said.
The elephants are allowed to bathe twice a day, which often goes up to three times during severe heatwave. Their day goes by rolling in the mud pond and bath pond. And the time to leave from here is decided only at their own will. Visitors can often spot the white tigress, Rani, lounging in the open. And whenever in her enclosure, she too gets coolers to keep her cool.
The Calcutta high court on Wednesday ordered former West Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee to appear before the Central Bureau of Investigation by 6 pm today in connection with the alleged irregularities in recruitment of teachers and group D staff in government schools.