Cost of Coal India unions’ strike

By: | Updated: January 7, 2015 12:31 PM

A joint call by five trade unions to strike work at the mines of Coal India and its subsidiaries disrupted production...

Coal India, Coal strike, coal workers strikeThe unions are protesting what they call an attempt to “denationalise” the monolithic coal producer through disinvestment. (Reuters)

A joint call by five trade unions to strike work at the mines of Coal India and its subsidiaries disrupted production at some sites on Tuesday, even as it was hoped that a meeting called by the Centre in the Capital late in the evening could facilitate a formula that would coax the workers to resume work.

The unions are protesting what they call an attempt to “denationalise” the monolithic coal producer through disinvestment while it is estimated a day’s loss of production at the PSU could cost the nation 1.3 million tonnes of the fuel — enough to run a 260 MW power plant at an optimum 85% plant load factor for a full year.

Cost of the strike:

* CIL’s production during April-December: 342.39 mt (67% of FY15 target) or 1.26 mt a day

* A 5-day strike as threatened by the trade unions will cost 6.3 mt at the current rate of production. Seen against the need to augment production to meet the annual target (April-December output was 3 percentage points lower than what the target demanded for the period), the loss can be seen higher.

* For perspective, 5 mt coal can fire an 1,000 MW plant at 85% PLF for a year. State of affairs at coal-fired power plants (as on January 1)

* 20 plants “super critical”with less than 4 days of fuel stock

* 42 plants at “critcal” stage with less than 7 days of coal stock.

Current coal-based power capacity: 1,54,000 MW

Average Plant Load Factor: 64%@

Coal availability to power sector: Domestic 500 million tonnes (mt)

Imported 85 mt

Current coal shortfall (if the power plants were to run at 85% PLF): 250 mt

Coal India’s production FY15 target: 520 mt

FY19 target: 1,000 mt

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