Siddaramaiah Calls For Energy Audit
BANGALORE: Admitting that the state is not able to accurately predict the distribution of energy across various sections of society, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Sunday called for an energy audit in the State and said farmers would have to be convinced to install meters on their pumpsets to help calculate estimates.
He was speaking at the 45th Foundation Day programme of the Karnataka Power Corporation Limited (KPCL).
“Today, subsidy for farmers and other schemes in the electricity sector, which was `1,800 crore in 2004-05, has reached around `6,200 crore. There has been no energy audit till now and we need to know where the generated power is going,” he said.
Siddaramaiah also cautioned KPCL staff to pull up their socks and work towards ensuring all current projects functioned at maximum efficiency.
“We are having to deal with regular outages at thermal power stations. The minister must also pay attention to transmission losses and theft which are also sizable,” he said.
The state has the potential to generate 345 MW of additional cheap hydel power at Shivanasamudra, which must be made use of, he said.
Energy Minister D K Shivakumar said he would look into suggestions by Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC) about putting high-level officers (CEO-level) in charge of projects under development.
“Today, there are many problems in setting up new plants. We just have to work with doubling the capacity at our current plants and work like a private company to finish work at ongoing projects in time,” he said.
Shivakumar also brought up the topic of dues owed to the generation company and said,
“The dues have reached around `12,000 crore today. There are many bodies like ESCOMS, zilla and gram panchayats who owe KPCL money. If this money does not come in, how will we fund more projects? This has to be fixed,” he said.