In 2017, India's growth in coal-fired power generation fell to its lowest level in 10 years as the country's electricity retailers were heavily in debt and failed to make full use of the country's existing installed capacity.
Power producers have cancelled some coal-fired power projects, considering that existing plants cannot sell all of their electricity. Currently, about 40% of India's coal-fired installed capacity is not available because India's state-owned power distribution companies, the core customers of India's power producers, are unable to increase wholesale electricity due to debt. These power distribution companies face huge losses because of the serious theft of electricity and the sale of electricity at a price below cost.
According to the central power authority, India's power planning agency, coal-fired power generation accounted for more than three-quarters of India's total power generation capacity in December 2017, an increase of 908 megawatts over the same period last year. This is the lowest since 2006. In 2006, the figure was 680 megawatts.
An analyst at Deloitte said: "economically speaking, India's power distributors are still in trouble, so there is not enough demand to drive all coal-fired power plants to full power. As some old coal-fired power plants are phased out, India's coal capacity is likely to decline further in the next few years. "
The current situation in India is that, on the one hand, coal-fired power generation capacity is overcapacity; on the other hand, nearly 300 million Indians are still without electricity. When he came to power in 2014, modi said that all Indians would have access to electricity, and had made ambitious plans. According to the plan, India will achieve the goal of electrifying every village in December 2018.
India's rapid development of renewable energy supply is intensifying. According to India's Ministry of new and renewable energy, India's installed renewable energy capacity increased by 4.8 gigawatts from April to November 2017, almost six times that of coal-fired power generation.
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