A single energy trading desk (centralized cell) would be established to streamline power sale and purchase management, Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu said on Sunday.
He said that nature has blessed Himachal Pradesh with abundant water resources, boasting a total hydro potential estimated at a staggering 24,567 MW, whereas only 11,150 MW has been harnessed through 172 hydro projects till date.
Stressing for enhanced coordination among three key entities namely the Directorate of Energy (DOE), Himachal Pradesh Power Corporation Limited (HPPCL) and Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board Limited (HPSEBL), he said that lack of communication and disparate pricing strategies have sometimes led to power being sold at suboptimal rates and purchased at higher costs.
Merging existing trading contracts of the Directorate of Energy, HPPCL, and HPSEBL into a single trading desk has become necessary and an allocation of Rs 200 crore will be made for its operational needs, he said in a statement issued here.
The cell aimed at revolutionizing the coordination of power trading strategies and transactions within the state's energy sector would reshape the landscape of energy management in the state, ensuring efficient short, medium, and long-term planning and the economic disposition of energy resources, commencing in the financial year 2024-25, the statement added.
The Chief Minister said that this transformative Single Energy Trading Desk will undertake a multifaceted role. It will not only optimize power trade but also explore structural and financial aspects to create a unified, independent entity overseeing power trade in Himachal Pradesh, encompassing HPSEBL, HPPCL, and DOE.
He said that power transactions and activities of HPPCL and HPSEBL must undergo pre-approval by the Himachal Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission (HPERC).
The desk will enable precise energy forecasting for hydro and other renewable sources, enhancing the state's ability to sell pooled power effectively and maximize the benefits of Renewable Purchase Obligation or Hydro Purchase Obligation.