1. From airports, changed thinking on highways to FASTag, top infrastructure points that made the news

From airports, changed thinking on highways to FASTag, top infrastructure points that made the news

Double-digit growth over three years and growth projections—CAPA estimates traffic and volume of business at airports will exceed capacity by 2022, and capacity must be created to handle 500-600 million flyers by 2030—show airport expansion has to happen over shorter time-frames.

By: | Published: November 8, 2017 4:19 AM
Cost of land acquisition and rehabilitation around existing highways is increasing. Cost of land acquisition and rehabilitation around existing highways is increasing.

With Airport infra set to choke, would suggest CivilAv Ministry focus on an implementable 10 year program rather than a 25 yr Masterplan
Mid-term action must complement long-term vision
Double-digit growth over three years and growth projections—CAPA estimates traffic and volume of business at airports will exceed capacity by 2022, and capacity must be created to handle 500-600 million flyers by 2030—show airport expansion has to happen over shorter time-frames.

Change in thinking on Highways: Earlier—easier to do widening of existing. Now—Easier to do fresh alignments. Example > Agra-Lucknow
Fresh thinking on highway development
Cost of land acquisition and rehabilitation around existing highways is increasing. Besides, expansion activity gets delayed by existing traffic, rehabilitation of existing amenities. It is much easier from these perspectives to go for a greenfield highway project.

Coal India bounces back ~ production in October was highest monthly in last 5 years. Good to see fight back spirit and can-do attitude
Coal India’s production recovers
Coal India and subsidiaries, producing 46.14 million tonnes in October, met 93% of their target. Offtake was an impressive 100%, at 48.28 million tonnes.

Pain-points: FE reports many state Discoms are severely delaying payments to Gencos. Overdues from Discoms may have reached Rs 20,000 crores
Discoms delay genco payments
Payments delayed beyond a 60-day window to just seven generation companies totalled a whopping Rs 8,033 crore. In certain cases, payments were made only when the gencos agreed to waive off the interest.

Rooftop Solar & net metering: JyotiMukul makes d point in BusStd that plans not taking off as conflicts with business interest of Discoms
Rooftop solar’s discom hurdle
Permission for net meters for rooftop solar generation is to be sought from discoms whose business is threatened by such generation. Clearances take 9-12 months, as per some solar producers, while there are ad hoc demands from discoms. Rooftop solar, however, remains key to the renewable vision.

Bend it like Steel: Concrete made by Indian-led team can resist 9.0-scale quakes
New quake-proof material discovered
University of British Columbia researchers have developed a material that acts like steel; it bends during quake simulations, rather than crumbling. A 2 metre wall broke only with a simulated quake thrice as strong as the strongest recorded.

Bidding for Wind Energy projects stuck at States level as Central guidelines—a mandatory requirement, still awaited. Expected by end Nov
Wind-power bidding guidelines awaited
Under Electricity Act, states can’t call for bids of power projects if the Centre has not set guidelines. Bidding in Tamil Nadu and Gujarat are stuck in the absence of guidelines. In Gujarat, wind power developers have challenged the state’s call for bids.

This will really push electronic tolling: FASTag to be compulsory for all new 4-wheelers from Dec 1
Toll collection at e-speed
The RFID tag will cut queues at toll booths via automatic debiting of toll from a prepaid account of the vehicle owner. It is mandatory for all new vehicles sold from December 1 onwards, and existing vehicle owners can buy the tags from designated banks and toll booths.

A weekly collection of the author’s tweets—with a brief backgrounder—by Sarthak Ray

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