State-owned CIL on Monday said the supply of coal to power producers registered a 23 per cent y-o-y jump to 48.2 million tonnes (MT) in October, in view of concentrated efforts to consolidate dwindling stock of the dry fuel at electricity-generating utilities of the country. The development assumes significance in view of the country’s power plants grappling with fuel shortages.
“CIL (Coal India Ltd) scaled up its supplies to an all-time month’s high of 48.2 MT in October 2021 clocking a year-on-year (y-o-y) 23 per cent growth,” the state-owned company said in a statement. In comparison, despatch to coal-fired power plants during October 2020 had stood at 39.2 MT. The coal major also logged a strong 42 per cent growth as compared to the pre-pandemic October 2019 when despatch was at around 34 MT.
“The immediate need was to not only meet the daily coal requirement of power plants but also shore up coal stocks at their end. “From 7.3 MT on October 17, the coal pile at power plants gradually climbed to 10.52 MT, equivalent to six days’ stock by the month-end (October 30). This stock accrual was the result of increased supplies, bulk of which was from CIL’s sources,” the company said. During the last week of October, the average per-day stock accumulation at thermal power plants has been over three lakh tonnes, touching almost four lakh tonnes on four days.
Against the coal consumption of around 1.8 MT per day by the power sector, the supply from CIL and other sources has been at around 2.2 MT during the last week of October, with CIL accounting for the major share. On October 28, CIL’s despatch to power plants peaked at 1.8 MT, the highest-ever recorded for a single day since the inception of the company. CIL expects to further boost up the stocks to 12 MT by Diwali.
Progressively, for the year ended October, CIL at 294 MT supplied 56.2 MT more coal to the power sector, clocking a 23.6 per cent growth. This is yet another high for this period. During the corresponding period last year, the supplies were at 237.8 MT. Scripting a new record, CIL despatched a total of 364.4 million tonnes of coal during the first seven months of the ongoing fiscal, the highest-ever for this period so far, posting 19 per cent growth over the corresponding period last year.
The increase in volume terms is a whopping 58.6 MT, compared with 305.8 MT in the corresponding period last year. Overall coal supplies for October reached 56.7 MT with a nearly 12 per cent jump against October of last year when the despatch was at 50.7 MT. Coal India accounts for over 80 per cent of the total domestic coal output.