Rains bring down demand for power in Karnataka

The copious rains in Karnataka have brought down the demand for electricity by almost half. According to the State Load Dispatch Centre of Karnataka Power Transmission Corporation Ltd. estimates, the State’s demand hovered around 6,600 MW, and for Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (BESCOM) areas, around 3,500 MW.

Senior BESCOM officials said this was around 40% lower than the usual demand. “The peak demand in city areas has not seen a huge dip yet per say. But in rural areas, it has been marked given the reduction in irrigation pump (IP) sets because of the rain. In city areas, it could be a 5-10% reduction corresponding to the decrease in usage of air conditioners and fans,” an official said.

Apart from that, with work from home continuing for many major companies, the demand from this sector has been lower since the pandemic started, the official added.

The State sees a huge spike in peak demand during the summer, when IP set usage for agriculture is at its maximum in rural areas and rising temperatures push up the use of cooling equipment.

The surplus power is being sold on the Indian Energy Exchange, officials said. BESCOM officials also said there has been a marked decrease in rain-related power disruption complaints compared to the flood of complaints during the first rains. “Now it has stabilised as we have taken enough preventive measures such as tree pruning and crucial equipment replacement,” an official said.

Rains are expected to continue in the city and State for the next few days. The maximum temperature in Bengaluru, which received rain on Saturday too, was 28°C, while the minimum temperature was 20°C — both with nil departure from the normal.

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