Govt launches real-time electricity market; here’s how it will change power landscape forever

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Published: June 3, 2020 2:40 PM

The real-time electricity market will provide an alternate mechanism for the distribution companies to access a larger market than what they have at present, that too at a competitive price.

power demand, electricity, power usage, power consumption, real time electricity market, The real-time market would open for 30 minutes in a day, and buyers and sellers will have the option of placing buy or sell bids for each 15-minute time block.

In a move to utilise surplus capacity in the power sector, the government today launched a pan-India real-time market of electricity. With the newly launched market, India has joined the league of a handful of nations to have such a market, said R K Singh, MoS (IC), Power and New & Renewable Energy. The proposed real-time electricity market will provide an alternate mechanism for the distribution companies to access a larger market than what they have at present, that too at a competitive price, R K Singh added. The government also expects that the new market at a national level will help manage diversity in the demand pattern in the country. 

Benefits of real-time electricity market

The introduction of a real-time market will bring the required flexibility to provide real-time balance while ensuring optimal utilisation of the available surplus capacity in the system, said a statement by the Ministry of Power. The move is further expected to make power procurement planning, scheduling, dispatch and imbalance handling more efficient. While the distribution companies are expected to manage their power purchase portfolio more optimally with this market, it is likely to result in cost optimisation of power purchase and serving the consumers with reliable supply as any last minute requirement of power can easily be bought from the real-time market.

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How real-time electricity market will function

While speaking at the event, the power minister underlined that the real-time market is an organised market platform to enable the buyers and sellers across India to meet their energy requirements closer to a real-time of operation. As per the latest announcements, the real-time market would open for 30 minutes in a day, and buyers and sellers will have the option of placing buy or sell bids for each 15-minute time block. Today’s announcement to launch a real-time electricity market has marked the second reform in the power sector in the last few days. Recently, the government had announced to privatise all electricity distribution companies (discoms) in the union territories.

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Increased efficiency of green energy

Keeping in the eye the government’s target of 175 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022, the power minister said that the real-time market would help to mitigate challenges to the grid management due to intermittent and variable nature of renewable energy generation and therefore, help to integrate higher quantum of renewable energy resources into the grid.

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