Essay on the Distribution and Production of Hydro-Electricity in India

Water power resources are unevenly distributed in India. There is a big contrast between the distribution of potential water, power and the developed water power in the country.

Power development in India

The total hydel-power potential in India is about 400 lakhs kW About 80 per cent of the developed hydel resources of India lay in the Western Ghats (Maharashtra), Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, H.P and Punjab.

These states do not have much of coal or oil. However, rich potential for hydel-power development exists. At present there are a number of hydel-power schemes in these States.

The pattern of power development in India is as follows:

(i) Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Meghalaya, Kerala, Punjab, Sikkim, Uttaranchal and Jammu and Kashmir-hydro-electricity.

(ii) Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, West Bengal and Gujarat-Thermal.

(iii) Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, U.P, Assam, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa-partly hydro and partly thermal.

(iv) Nuclear power stations have been developed in the states of Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and U.P.

Electricity plays a significant role in the economic development of a country. Electricity is a very convenient form of energy. In India considerable progress has been attained in power development since the independence of the country.

Thermal plants account for 74 per cent of total power generation and hydro­electric plants 24 per cent. The balance 2 per cent is contributed by nuclear plants.

Power Consumption Pattern in India.

Industry is the largest power using sector of the Indian economy. It consumes almost half of the total power supply in the country. In agriculture, power is consume for irrigation purpose. Power is utilized for running railways.

Consumption of electricity has increased on account of its liberal use for domestic purposes and wastage.

The major multi-purpose projects in India are as follows: (i) Nagarjunasagar Project (Andhra Pradesh), (ii) Tungabhadra Project (Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka), (iii) Gandak Project (Bihar and U.P), (iv) Kosi Project (Bihar), (v) Kakrapara Project (Gujarat), (vi) Ukai Project (Gujarat), (vii) Periyar Valley scheme (Kerala), (viii) Tawa Project (Madhya Pradesh), (ix) Chambal Project (Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan), (x) Girna Project (Maharashtra), (xi) Puma Project (Maharashtra), (xii) Bhadra Reservoir Project (Karnataka), (xiii) Upper Krishna Project (Karnataka), (xiv) Malaprabha Project (Karnataka), (xv) Hirakud Dam Project (Orissa), (xvi) Bhakra-Nangal Project (Punjab, H.P, Haryana and Rajasthan), (xvii) Rajasthan Canal Project (Rajasthan), (xviii) Parambikulam Aliyar Project (Tamil Nadu and Kerala), (xix) Ramganga Project (U.P), (xx) Mayurakshi Project (West Bengal), (xxi) Farakka Project (West Bengal), and (xxii) Damodar Valley Corporation (West Bengal and Bihar).

Besides these, there are many hydro-electric projects spread over in different parts of the country. These arc Pong dam and Ranjit Sagar Dam in Punjab, Chamerra and Nathpa Jhakri in Himachal Pradesh, Tehri Project in Uttaranchal and Narmada in Gujarat.

These hydro-electric projects have helped in developing industrial and agricultural production. Electricity has been supplied for domestic uses almost throughout the country. It is being used for running trains.

In short, the development of hydro- electricity has revolutionized the economic landscape of the country.

In India the per capita consumption of electricity is about 148 kWh. Industry continues to be the largest consumer of electricity. It consumes 69 per cent of the total electric energy consumed.