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National Load Dispatch Centre planned at Delhi, Kolkata

Anil Sasi

Move in line with stipulations of Electricity Act 2003

Integrated power
NLDC to administer integration of regional transmission systems
Establishment scheduled to be completed by May 2008
Estimated cost put at Rs 45 crore

New Delhi , March 3

As a first major step towards having a full-fledged National Power Grid in the country, the Centre has decided to establish a National Load Dispatch Centre (NLDC) at Delhi, with a back up at Kolkata.

The NLDC, to be set up by Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL), will interface with all the five Regional Load Dispatch Centres (RLDCs) that are operational at present to acquire real-time data to continuously monitor integrated operation of the proposed National Grid.

So far, the country has five regional grids controlled by five RLDCs. The move to have a nodal Load Dispatch Centre is in line with the stipulations of the Electricity Act 2003, which has provided for the constitution of the NLDC for optimum scheduling and despatch of electricity among the RLDCs.

The NLDC will administer the integration of the regional transmission systems in the country being done for the development of the National Grid, officials involved in the exercise said. Once the National Grid is in place , the present inter-regional transmission capacity of around 9,500 MW is envisaged to increase to over 30,000 MW by the year 2012.

According to Government officials, the scheme for establishment of the NLDC is scheduled to be completed by May 2008 at an approved estimated cost of Rs 45 crore.

To ensure integrated power system in each such region, five RLDCs had earlier been set up as apex bodies for managing electricity flows within the region and monitoring grid operations.

The RLDCs have been formed under the provisions of Section 25 of the Electricity Act, which requires the Centre to make regional demarcation of the country for integrated transmission and supply of electricity across States, and in particular to facilitate voluntarily inter-connection and coordination of facilities for the inter-State, Regional and inter-regional generation and transmission of electricity.

Towards the objective of formation of National Grid, a number of inter-regional schemes have been planned for phased development over the next six years.

Out of the estimated Rs 8,00,000 crore required for doubling the power capacity to 2,00,000 MW by the year 2012, about Rs 2,00,000 crore is expected to be required for the associated transmission system, including creation of a National Grid.

Out of this, an investment of about Rs 70,000 crore is expected to be required in Central Sector Transmission Systems alone.

PGCIL is expected to mobilise an investment of Rs 41,000 crore from its own resources, while the balance requirement of Rs 29,000 crore is proposed to be mobilised through private investments.

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