Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC) has firmed up plans to pump in a capex of 28,000- 30,000 crore over the next nine years to enhance its thermal capacity from the existing 6,750 MW to 10,470 MW. Besides thermal, DVC also plans to create a portfolio of floating solar power projects, ground-mounted solar power projects, pump storage facilities, battery storage facilities, EV infrastructure and green hydrogen projects forming JVs with NTPC, SJVNL and NHPC. The renewable projects could attract investments of up to2,700 crore over 5-6 years, DVC chairman RN Singh said.
Union power minister RK Singh has set up a stiff target to take up DVC’s installed capacity to a range between 16,000- 17,000 MW in the next 8-9 years in the view of increasing power demand the country has started witnessing post-Covid. The capacity addition has been planned in terms of increasing demand for power with average peak demand growing 15% year-on-year (y-o-y) in FY22. Power demand has been estimated to grow at 10% y-o-y and DVC has been asked to match the growing demand, especially for supplies in areas like Delhi and Punjab where peak demand has been on the rise.
Delhi breached a peak demand of 7,000 MW during June last fiscal and Punjab 10,000 MW during May last fiscal. Contract demand from industries like SAIL and Indian Railway is also set to rise and DVC has started distributing power at 11 kV to small industries from a level of 33 kV only it earlier distributed, enhancing power requirement.
The country’s second-largest power generator serving the discoms and industrial consumers as of now was also trying to tap the domestic segment through the open access system. Hence a requirement for an additional generation has come up, Singh said adding DVC generated its highest, 40775 million units in FY22. “While thermal generations would take DVC’s capacity beyond 10,000 MW, renewables would add another 3,650 MW at least with the chunk of capacity addition coming from floating solar projects and pump storage facilities,” Singh said.
The thermal projects would be brownfield expansions with another 2×660 MW to be added to the Raghunathpur unit by FY27. This would require a capex of Rs 9,089 crore. Another 800 MW unit would be set up at Durgapur Power Station by FY29 entailing an investment of Rs 6,000 crore and two units of 800 MW each at the Koderma power station by 2030 at an investment of Rs 12,276 crore.The funding for these projects would be done in a 70:30 debt: equity ratio, which works out to an infusion of around Rs 1,000 crore equity capital per year spread for about 9-10 years.
For the renewable projects, DVC’s equity requirement would be to the tune of Rs 270 crore per year since those would mostly come up in JVs. DVC has formed JVs with NTPC and SJVNL to have a 2,030 MW of floating solar portfolio by FY25 across its dams and barrages and a JV with NHPC for a 1,500 MW pump storage project by 2028 at Lagu Pahar in Jharkhand.
DVC has been awarded a coal block, Tubed coal mine, at Latehar in Jharkhand, which would reach its peak capacity at 6 million tonne (MT) per annum five years after mining activities start. The company has already obtained government clearance for land acquisition.