Grid availability affecting energy generation, says association
Wind mills in Tamil Nadu were hit by a shutdown lasting hours on several days during the current wind season, according to energy generators.
With an installation of nearly 9,300 MW in Coimbatore, Tiruppur, Tirunelveli, Thoothukudi, and Kanyakumari districts, Tamil Nadu has the highest installed wind energy capacity in the country. “On an average, wind mills are stopped for four hours a day on working days and for almost eight hours on holidays,” claims K. Kasthurirangaian, Indian Wind Power Association president.
According to data shared by Tamil Nadu Electricity Consumers’ Association (TECA), 54.55 million units of wind energy was consumed on August 3. Winds are better this year compared to last year. So, if there is no evacuation problem, generation can be high, say sources.
Grid availability for wind energy is low in Tamil Nadu compared to Gujarat or Karnataka, says Mr. Kasthurirangaian.
The State should ensure grid stability and improve wind energy generation, says N. Pradeep, secretary of TECA. Tamil Nadu saw 700 MW of installed wind energy capacity addition last year. With arrears pending for almost 23 months now for wind energy generators and wind mills facing grid drop, Tamil Nadu might not attract much investment in the sector this year, says Mr. Kasthurirangaian.
40% captive use
Almost 40 % of the installed wind energy capacity is for captive use by industries.
“The units that go in for captive wind energy incur just about half the power cost compared to grid power. So wind energy has helped exporting industries improve their competitiveness in the international market. When there is no wind energy generation, the competitiveness of these industries is hit,” he says.
In an appeal to the government, the Southern India Mills’ Association said that in recent days huge backing down in the sector is more than 25 %. Generation in June and July this year was 12 % and 17 % less compared to the corresponding months last year.
Curtailing wind energy generation is high in the current season and the revenue loss works out to almost ₹2,000 crore, it said. Many industries, across sectors, are facing a slowdown.Those that have invested in renewable energy are able to have better operation. The industries cannot afford to face a power crisis, says Mr. Pradeep.