Interview with P R kumar, CEO – BSES Yamuna Power Limited, India
How is the future energy world shaping in your opinion?
Energy sector is going through a revolutionary phase driven by technological advancements and economic viability for renewable and storage solutions. Future of energy shall experience a higher participation of Distributed Renewable Energy along with increased per capita consumption with electrification of the transport sector. Digitalization, artificial intelligence, IOT and block chain technology will make the smart technologies smarter, which shall, in turn, lead to development of an effective and an efficient energy system.
Low carbon economy, cleaner and highly efficient technologies shall shape up the future of utilities around the world.
Customer service shall be the center of energy eco system with a real-time tracking, evaluation and feedback between the customer and utility. Future of the energy is smart, more decentralized, yet more connected with increased reliability, environmentally sustainability, and economically affordable with a gamut of business opportunities.
Please share the challenges that utilities are facing these days in your region?
Indian distribution utilities have experienced a tremendous achievement in their technical and commercial performances over the past 15 years, owing to a series of reforms starting with the Electricity Act of 2003.
In spite of remarkable improvements, the distribution business still represents the weakest link amongst the energy chain of generation, transmission and distribution. Barring a few government and private utilities, most of the utilities continue their struggle with operational efficiencies and achievement of targeted revenues. Huge debt burdens continue to be a millstone around the necks of Indian utilities owing to colossal T&D losses, non-cost reflective tariffs, theft and non-payments. Financial health of discoms prevents them from making proactive capital investments and adopting new technologies.
What is your vision for the future of the energy systems in your region?
Indian Inc. is determined to achieve the ambitious clean energy targets set by the Government of India. With sustained efforts of Industry and the policy makers, India will achieve reliable, economically competitive and environmentally sustainable electricity system, addressing the energy security and environmental concerns.
India is in sync with the world, going through an interesting and a disruptive phase of transformation in the energy sector. India is having a proactive approach in designing policies and programs for the upcoming disruptions like electrification of large energy intensive sectors such as transport. It has policies and plans for huge addition in renewable energy capacity. It is making efforts to strengthen electricity supply to undeserved and un-served pockets through integration of grid and distributed energy systems and adoption of emerging storage technologies.
There have been huge capacity additions in the generation sector, the challenge lies in making the generated energy available to all. The problem is being accessed through the relevant Government initiatives and in next few years, India shall be a 100% electrified nation.
India through its new EV program has ambitious plans to completely electrify its automobile sector by 2030. Digital interventions are such as smart grids, smart meters, social media and consumer apps are finding quick ways in Indian utility sector.