The government is fortifying major initiatives undertaken earlier to improve the power situation in the light of the country's worst blackout last month.
Minister of State for Power K.C. Venugopal in a written reply informed parliament Friday that among the initiatives taken were delicensing of thermal generation, introduction of Ultra-Mega Power Projects (UMPP) and the investor friendly New Hydro Policy 2008.
With delicensing of generation, it is expected that market forces would weed out excess and inefficient capacity. This has speeded up the entire process and close to 200,000 MW of capacity addition has been cleared by the environment ministry in the way of new coal and gas based power plants.
The Ultra Mega Power projects (UMPP), each with a capacity of 4,000 MW or more, are being developed with the aim of bridging the gap in generation.
The UMPPs are seen as an expansion of the MPP (Mega Power Projects) that the government undertook in the 1990s, with limited success
The New Hydro Policy 2008 was designed to involve the private sector in developing the hydro-electric power sector and reduce dependence on thermal energy, which accounts for 84 percent of the country's power generation.
The hydro policy has provision of penalty for delays, in case the developer is unable to complete the project in the stipulated period.
Other initiatives listed by the minister were increasing domestic manufacturing capacity of power plant equipment, adoption of supercritical technologies and enhancing availability of trained manpower