The coal stock situation at thermal power projects has improved further as the number of non-pit head projects having less than four days of coal (supercritical stock) reduced to 58 on Monday from 69 a week ago, government data showed.
According to latest coal stock data of the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), the number of non-pit head projects having less than four days of coal was 58 on October 18 and 69 on October 11.
The data showed that the number of plants with supercritical stock was 61 this Sunday (October 17). Thus, the coal stock situation is inching towards normalcy.
The improvement in the coal stock situation assumes significance in view of the ongoing shortage of the dry fuel at thermal power plants in the country.
The Central Electricity Authority monitors coal stock situation of 135 thermal power plants with cumulative generation capacity of over 165 GW.
The data also showed that the number of power plants with zero days of coal has come down to 13 as of Monday with cumulative installed generation capacity of 11,710 MW, compared to 15 with 15,290 MW capacity a week back.
The number of the plants with one day of coal stock has increased to 28 with 34,795 MW capacity as on October 18, compared to 27 with 35,360 MW capacity on October 11.
The number of plants with two days of coal decreased to 18 (with 27,490 MW capacity) from 20 (22,755 MW) a week ago.
The number of plants with three days of coal also came down to 12 (with 16,874 MW capacity) from 21 (27,014 MW) a week ago.
The number of plants with four days of coal has decreased to 18 with 20,725 MW capacity as of Monday, from 20 with 25,840 MW capacity a week ago, showing improvement in dry fuel stock.
The number of plants with five days of coal has increased to 12 (12,840 MW capacity) from five (4,105 MW) a week ago.
The power ministry data also showed improvement in the power shortage situation as it came down to 2,060 MW on October 18 from 6,857 MW a week back.
Amid the coal shortage at power plants, the peak power shortage had moderated to 986 MW on October 15, in sharp contrast to 11,626 MW on October 7.
The 11,626 MW peak power shortage on October 7 was the highest during the first half of this month.
As per experts, power demand further moderated from last weekend with the onset of autumn and heavy rains in many parts of the country.
They opined that the coal stock situation at power plants would further improve in coming days with government's efforts to scale up supplies.
Earlier last week, the power ministry had stated that the capacity of units under outage due to low coal stocks reduced from 11 GW on October 12 to 5 GW on October 14.