Nagpur: India is currently experiencing a dual crisis, in which both heatwaves and power outages are wreaking havoc on the country’s economy.
A power crisis has resulted from hours-long blackouts, a halt in manufacturing, and low coal inventories. Households and businesses are being impacted as coal stockpiles at power plants deplete; imports have also been halted since the Russia-Ukraine war.
In an interview, chairman of ReNew Energy Global Plc, Sumant Sinha, an Indian supplier of wind and solar power, said, “it’s becoming a difficult situation; the entire summer will be a test.”
High coal and oil prices are threatening to aggravate inflationary pressures, prompting India’s central bank to raise its key policy rate unexpectedly on Wednesday.
Coal production, which accounts for more than 70 percent of India’s electricity generation, has fallen short of meeting the country’s post-pandemic energy demand.
“If power supply is cut to the industrial sector, the recovery in the manufacturing sector could be delayed by at least one quarter,” said Aditi Nayar, an economist with ICRA Ltd.
Approximately 16 of India’s 28 states have been experiencing power outages ranging from two to 10 hours per day.