Spot Power Price Spikes to ₹4.67/kWh in May 2018

In May 2018, spot power price spiked to ₹4.67 (~$0.0695)/kWh. May’s spot power price was ₹1.76 (~$0.0262)/kWh higher than the spot price recorded in May 2017, registering an increase of 60 percent from the same month last year. This is a result of an all India peak demand touching 170.9 GW in May 2018, about 6.2 percent more than the highest peak demand of 161 GW in May 2017, per National Load Despatch Centre (NLDC).

According to the Indian Energy Exchange (IEX), the reasons behind the high spot prices were: peak summer season leading to an increase in demand from the distribution companies (DISCOMs), inadequate availability of coal, low hydro generation, and a slow pickup of wind power generation in the southern and western states of India.

This also goes on to show that solar power generation which accounted for 2 percent in FY 2017-18 is still not high enough to make a difference.

The spot power prices have been undergoing a gradual increase in the country. The average spot power price recorded in April 2018 was also up by approximately 44 percent when compared to the average spot price recorded in April 2017. In April 2018, the spot power price was ₹3.98 (~$0.0594)/kWh, ₹1.21 (~$0.0180)/kWh more than the ₹2.77 (~$0.0413)/kWh recorded in the same month the previous year.

In May 2018, the Day-Ahead Market (DAM) at IEX followed the trend set in the previous month of April. The DAM saw 4,916 MUs traded, an increase of approximately 21 percent when compared to the 4,055 MUs traded in April 2018. Compared to May 2017, in which 4,100 MU were traded, the DAM witnessed a 20 percent increase in May 2018.

“One Nation One Price” was realized for 22 days during the course of the month. In May 2018, four solar generators with sizes varying from 3 MW to 100 MW were sold in the DAM at IEX. This was less than the 6.14 MUs sold in DAM on IEX by seven solar generators with size varying from 3-100 MW in April 2018.

On a daily average basis, about 159 MUs were traded during the month while the average daily sell bids were at 198 MUs and buy bids at 207 MUs. On a daily average basis, 662 participants traded in the DAM.

The Term-Ahead Market (TAM) traded 253 MUs in May 2018, mainly in the intra-day and day-ahead contingency market segments. This is 189 MUs more than the 64 MUs traded in TAM in May 2017, a noteworthy increase of approximately 295 percent.

Saumy Prateek Saumy has been with as a staff reporter covering business and energy news since 2016. Prior to Mercom, Saumy was a copy editor at Thomson Reuters. Saumy earned his Bachelors Degree in Journalism & Mass Communication from the Manipal Institute of Communication at Manipal University. More articles from Saumy Prateek.