Nagaland Power department appeals for cooperation amid ‘alarming’ shortage
DIMAPUR — The power shortage in Nagaland has reached an ‘alarming stage,’ the state Department of Power said on Monday, attributing it to below-capacity production at hydro power generating stations.
Power shortages are a perennial problem during the lean seasons in the northeastern region, which is largely dependent upon hydropower. However, the shortages are much more acute this year as several thermal power stations in the northeastern region have been shut down for maintenance, it said in a press release.
In this connection, the department has requested that all consumers not only use electricity judiciously but also diligently cooperate with the department and make prompt payments of their monthly electricity bills. The department had also been requesting all village councils through the district administration to help and assist in clearing all vegetation, such as trees and bamboos, near power transmission and distribution lines, as maximum interruptions are caused by such vegetation, it said.
Elaborating on the situation, it said that the state is 90% dependent on the import of power, and despite the increase in power availability and supply each year, demand has surged at a much faster rate.
“For instance, the peak demand of the state during the 1990s was only about 60 MW. But as of now, the peak demand has increased by 300% to 180 MW. However, the availability is about 100 MW only during peak hours. Correspondingly, the cost of power purchases is also increasing year by year,” read the press release.
In this scenario, the department made an appeal that “no organisation(s) should disrupt power installations, as it will only lead to more power instability.”
“For a long term solution, the department is in the process of initiating several hydropower generation projects within the state, including new transmission and distribution lines and substations for better power service,” it said, calling for cooperation.
Further, keeping in mind the ongoing HSLC and HSSLC exams, the department stated that it is taking all measures to improve power stability and ensure stable supply.
As a result, though at a much higher rate than long-term purchase agreements, the state government has permitted the purchase of additional power from the spot market outside the NE region on an emergency basis.
And while the availability of additional power in the spot market varies over time, the department will make every effort to make purchases in order to alleviate the state’s power situation, it added.