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Posted at: Jan 2, 2018, 1:12 AM; last updated: Jan 2, 2018, 1:12 AM (IST)BIZ TALK

Judicious mix of renewable resources must for energy security, says NHPC

Judicious mix of renewable resources must for energy security, says NHPC
Balraj Joshi

Balraj Joshi, 
Chairman and Managing Director, NHPC talks to Sanjeev Sharma

NHPC’s three hydropower projects with total installed capacity of 3,130 MW are under various stages of construction, says Balraj Joshi, Chairman and Managing Director, NHPC. He said a judicious mix of various available renewable resources must become part of the energy bucket.

Q: What is NHPC’s current generating capacity and plants?

A: We are the largest hydropower utility in India in Central sector and are operating 21 hydropower stations and one wind power project with a total installed capacity of 6,717 MW. NHPC contributes around 15% of total hydropower installed capacity in India.

Q: What are the projects in the pipeline?

A: At present, our three hydropower projects with total installed capacity of 3,130 MW are under various stages of construction. We have already synchronised one out of four units of 800 MW Parbati-II project and 330 MW Kishanganga project is in advanced stage of construction. All clearances have already been accorded to PakalDul project (1,000 MW). This project is being developed by our joint venture company CVPPL.

At present, 10 hydroelectric projects with proposed installed capacity of 7,795 MW are under consideration and clearances by the government. Out of these, we will implement five projects of 5,795 MW capacity on our own and the remaining five will be implemented through joint ventures.

Q: How is NHPC’s expansion driven by diversification in other renewable energy projects?

A: Development of hydropower remains our core strength and the sector has given NHPC its unique identity. Though hydropower has been and shall remain our priority, we are open to exploring opportunities in other renewable energy space. Our 50 MW wind power project in Jaisalmer is under operation. We have signed an MoU with Government of Kerala for development of grid interactive wind power project in Palakkad district with a potential of 72 MW.

We have already signed Energy Purchase Agreement (EPA) with TANGEDCO, Tamil Nadu for development of 50 MW Solar Power Project in Tamil Nadu.

A JV company, Bundelkhand Saur Urja Limited, has been promoted for harnessing solar power in Uttar Pradesh. We are also gearing up for availing business opportunities in thermal sector through development of 2 x 660 MW Pirpainti Thermal Power Project, Bihar in joint venture mode. Opportunities are also being explored actively for the development of pumped storage schemes in different states like Karnataka, Maharashtra and Odisha.

Q: What is the scope of hydropower in the emerging renewable energy landscape?

A: As our economy grows, the demand for electricity shall remain healthy. However, with increased public consciousness regarding our carbon footprint, a majority of the demand will have to be filled up by clean energy and there is no better source than hydro.

Hydropower is the best and dependable renewable energy technology which is currently commercially viable on a large scale. Hydropower is clean power and having almost negligible generation of greenhouse gases as compared to other conventional modes of power generation. Our nation is endowed with huge potential but more than 60% of it remains untapped. As other renewable resources like wind and solar are intermittent in nature, role of hydropower becomes crucial in grid stability. Therefore, a judicious mix of various available renewable resources must become part of our energy bucket.

Q: What is NHPC’s international footprint?

A: We have provided consultancy services in the field of hydropower development to neighboring countries such as Bhutan and Myanmar as well as to Tajikistan, Nigeria and Ethiopia.

An intergovernmental agreement has already been signed between India and Bhutan for implementation of Chamkharchhu-I HE Project (770 MW) in Bhutan through joint venture between NHPC and Druk Green Power Corporation of Bhutan. We are also providing complete design and engineering consultancy services to Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project Authority (MHPA) for implementation of Mangdechhu HE Project (720 MW) in Bhutan. NHPC also prepared DPRs of 1,200 MW Tamanthi and 880 MW Shwezaye hydroelectric projects in Myanmar.

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