Energy: The core area of Tata Power
It is our Mission to provide world class power and energy solutions that exceed customer expectations. We are committed to innovating and deploying cutting edge eco-friendly technologies and caring for the safety, environment and well being of employees and communities.
We not only generate, Transmit and Distribute Energy but also take a serious view on Energy Conservation.
Rural Electrification Project
This project was undertaken as the villages it covered, i.e. Udhewadi and Walwandi are situated in very remote as well as hilly terrains of Maval Taluka in Maharashtra. The conventional method of grid connectivity was a difficult proposition. TPC therefore partnered with Maharashtra Energy Development Agency to ensure that these villages receive electricity. Houses as well as streetlights were provided under this scheme. Huts of tribals, which were away from the main village, have also been provided with independent home systems and streetlights. The Company provided a 10% share of the electrification project approved by Maharashtra Energy Development Agency jointly with Ministry of Non-conventional Energy Sources.
In Jojobera (Jharkhand ), 35 solar street lights and 100 lanterns were donated to the villagers of Khayerbani.
Energy Conservation Measures
‘Energy Management’ has become the buzz word in the last few years, but at Tata Power we can cite examples since last 2 decades as both our 500 MW units (coal as well as oil fired) have the unique qualification of having lowest auxiliary power consumption in the country, and are the only units working on sliding pressure modes over the entire range for avoiding transmission losses.
We have a pool of certified Energy Auditors. Demand side management is studied and implemented to the extent possible, thereby reducing the demand either through conservation, or shifting the load pressure through incentives of lower tarrifs.
Anticipating the possibility of load shedding in the summer of 2007, Tata Power embarked on a Save Power campaign in Mumbai called ‘I Will and Mumbai Will’. These activities were initiated as early as December 2006 to educate and motivate the consumers on power saving techniques. Several seminars were conducted. Employees and consumers were encouraged to switch over to CFL lamps, which, in Partnership with Phillips India were made available at discounted rates. Consumers were appealed to, through advertisements in Leading Newspapers, to operate their washing machines and other electric gadgets at non-peak hours and set Air Conditioners to 24 degrees and thus join the Conservation Campaign.
This was backed up with Awareness Programmes on Energy Conservation and Electrical Safety held in schools and colleges. Schools were specifically chosen so that the message reaches impressionable minds and conditions behaviour to conserve energy. Visits of children from elite schools to the thermal power station at Trombay were organized. The contents of all the awareness programmes focused on:
- Need for Energy Conservation
- Consequences of not conserving Energy in general
- Impact on them (not being able to play computer games, watch TV owing to Power Cuts etc.)
- Easy to follow tips on conserving Energy
- Precautions to be taken while using electric gadgets to avoid accidents
Statistics reveal that over the last 8-10 years, the number of accidents under the overhead lines has been increasing. In a study carried out by Tata Power, it was found that the major causes for the accidents are due to
- Cable operators stringing cable wires close to vicinity of the high tension lines
- Climbing on roofs and towers under the high tension lines
- Kite flying with metallic coated strings
To combat this danger, under the Jana Jagruti Abhiyaan several awareness programmes have been conducted by Tata Power in communities. This has helped in reducing line tripping and electrical accidents below overhead lines.
The other Focus Areas of Tata Power’s CS Action Plan are in alignment with the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDG). Our initiatives in various areas contribute to the goals as given below:
||UN’s Millennium Development Goals
||Achieve Universal Primary Education
Promote Gender Equality & Empower Women
||Reduce Child Mortality
Improve Maternal Health.
Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria & other Diseases
||Ensure Environmental Sustainability
||Eradicate Extreme Poverty & Hunger
The importance of literacy and education cannot be undervalued today. But mere concrete structures of schools are often insufficient to ensure that children, especially girls receive a minimum Primary education or reduce the drop out rates.
One of the several reasons of dropouts and low level of motivation of parents towards children’s schooling in rural areas is due to the lack of proper infrastructure and the distance of schools from the villages. Often, schools are established in dilapidated, unhygienic conditions with cramped space, lack of proper sitting arrangements for the children and lack of accommodation for teachers near the schools. Tata Power has built, repaired and renovated schools annually and created new infrastructure for progressive education.
Construction of primary schools and addition of classrooms to existing schools in villages, in the Hydro areas, has increased the number of girl students in particular and students in general. Access to primary education was earlier the sole prerogative of the male child because of social conditioning as well as distance of the school from the residential area. These initiatives by Tata Power have
- Helped changed the social conditioning
- Aided the opportunity for gender equality
- Reduced absenteeism and school dropouts
As the Tata Power’s Hydro generating station areas are prone to heavy monsoons, school sessions were often interrupted. Providing accommodation for teachers has helped
- In regular running of the schools during the heavy monsoon
- Reduced absenteeism of teachers
- Consequent improvement in teaching standards
- Better continuity, resulting in sustained interest of the child in education
It has additionally facilitated the girl child getting access to primary education, which results in continuing secondary education, paving the path for the girls’ empowerment in society.
Till date the Company has built over 65 primary schools, 4 high schools, 20 rooms for teachers, repaired and renovated many schools. Tata Power also manages two schools in the Mulshi and Maval Talukas up to Std VII and XI respectively.
For many, a certificate in completion of academic courses such as SSC or HSC may not always lead to being gainfully employed. It is now also accepted that there are youth whose area of intelligence lies in non-academic activities. We therefore conduct Vocational Training in technical courses and other skills like Horticulture, Bamboo Crafts, Paper Mashie, Tailoring, etc that facilitate the youth either to gain employment or be self employed.
The Company extends healthcare through its Medical Centres, to the surrounding communities. Medical Camps are conducted through the year and medicines distributed. Early diagnosis had led to early treatments thus reducing Mortality Rates. We have been partners in the Polio Immunization Drives of the Government by providing the necessary infrastructure to conduct the Drives.
In 2003, the “Life Line Express” medical camp spanned across 40 days and catered to 10,692 patients from the remotest villages in the Mulshi and Maval Talukas. This programme owes its success to the relentless efforts of volunteers who trudged through fields into villages with no motorable roads. We are immensely proud of what it achieved for the villagers. The caring attitude of our volunteers made the difference that earned us their compliments.
This hugely successful camp furthered the Tata Power resolve to undertake an ongoing programme to eradicate blindness caused due to Bilateral Cataracts and continued its endeavours towards the cause. The total number of cataract surgeries to date is 3,229. The effort continues with unabated enthusiasm.
Improving Maternal Health
Repeated childbirths in early years, coupled with inadequate nutrition during pregnancy, permanently impact the health of the mother and child alike. In macro terms, limiting family size also leads to conservation of natural resources and serves the national objective of population management.
The first initiative taken by Tata Power in this area was distribution of oral contraceptive pills. This project was started at the Bhivpuri Family Planning Centre in 1966 along with Pathfinders. This project gave the option of oral contraception to rural women who had to seek the permission of the husband and in-laws for the only family planning method being practiced then, tubectomy. This surgery entailed invasive procedure, long duration of hospitalization as well as recovery, rendering the woman’s services not being available to the family or endangering her health by cutting short the recuperation period. The non-invasive nature of the oral contraceptive helped the woman to limit the size of her family and look after her own health without antagonizing the family members. More importantly, she did not have to depend on destiny or fall prey to coercion to conceive one more child. She became the decision maker.
As the programme continued, regular medical check-ups were carried out, which helped detect cases of anaemia and other deficiencies, which were then corrected by free distribution of required treatment. A yearlong mother and child health programme provided medication, iron and vitamin supplements to expectant and nursing mothers as well as children. Early diagnosis of TB or other diseases led to early treatment adding to improvement in maternal health.
With the introduction of laparoscopic method of female sterilization, Tata Power renewed its efforts and started 5 Government approved centres (3 rural and 2 urban) for laparoscopic sterilization. 4103 sterilizations have been carried out to date.
Increased awareness of the safety of laparoscopic sterilizations is motivating more women to choose this option, leading to increased improvement in maternal health and helping the National Programme for Population Control.
HIV AIDS Awareness Programmes
HIV AIDS Awareness Programmes have been extensively held by a band of our volunteers across Mumbai and hydro areas.
In the programmes conducted, there have been 3,080 beneficiaries – students, teachers, truck drivers & cleaners, police personnel, & contract labour employees at Tata Power premises. The thrust has been on targeting the “at risk” group, moving on to other vulnerable groups like youth and influencing authority figures like teachers.
Tata Power also won the Dahanukar Award for HIV / AIDS intervention at the work place in 2007.
In Mumbai, this has been possible through the relentless efforts of volunteers who put in 633 man hours of personal time, supported by amenities like audio-visual facilities, transport, t-shirts, caps, banners sponsored by Tata Power and material such as informative posters, CDs, pamphlets, condoms for distribution obtained from MDACS (Maharashtra District AIDS Control Association), which is a State body engaged in fighting the spread of the dreaded disease.
Students from colleges at Lonavala partnered with Tata Power volunteers and conducted programmes at the marketplace in Lonavala.
This Tata Power project deals with the areas related to catchments of 6 lakes in the Western Ghats of Maval and Mulshi talukas in Pune District. Over the past 31 years, about 78 lakh saplings of fast growing tree species have been planted on the hill slopes of the lake catchments. Afforestation programme has been intensified since 1991 and Tata Power has been planting over 6 to 7 lakh trees every year. During the last 5 years, over 45 tree species, of the 85 species found in the Western Ghats were grown in the nurseries of TPC in Lonavala. These include trees and climber species, which also have medicinal value. This initiative supports the biological diversity in the eco forest system and in turn restores habitat for selected fauna. From 2004, around 30 lakh saplings have been planted in Mulshi and Maval Talukas, with a survival rate of 30%.
TPC is also engaged in creating awareness about protection to existing forests, forest fires, and afforestation of degraded forest areas. Students and rural women have also participated in these programmes.
Local people are trained in nurturing healthy saplings. As the villagers are also engaged in the programmes, it has led to increased employment opportunities.
Our Belgaum and Jojobera plants also carry out afforestation around their environs.
Provision of Smokeless Chulhas
The consistent use of traditional chulhas pose health hazards for the rural women. Switching over to LPG cylinders is hardly an option, because of availability and affordability, both. TPC thought of a more viable option and provided smokeless chulhas to 2,325 women. This has:
- Alleviated respiratory diseases in the women
- Decreased pressure on firewood requirement
- Reduced pollution
TPC has taken steps in various areas to encourage income generating activities as well as measures to make the youth employable. Some of the activities, which have been designed to the needs of the locations, are listed below.
Income Generation Activities
Release of fish in village ponds
Release of fish in village ponds of the Mulshi and Maval talukas is a routine activity carried out annually. In the years 2004 - 2007, 30.4 lakh fishes were released.
Besides facilitating income generation, easy availability of fresh fish helps ensure protein-rich diet to the villagers at an affordable price.
The Mahsheer Breeding Programme has entered its 35th year and Indian Council of Agricultural Research has recognised the work done by TPC in Mahsheer conservation and sustaining it for more than three decades. Incidentally, this is the most successful Mahsheer breeding facility in India and South East Asia. In 2005, over 4.5 lakh eggs were fertilized and 2.70 lakhs fry / semi-fingerlings were produced.
The Company has also carried out cage culture and ranching programmes successfully and demonstrated the use of such research programmes for replication all over the country.
Distribution Of Fruit Trees To Self-Help Groups
TPC distributes fruit trees to villagers in Mulshi and Maval Talukas. The beneficiaries are encouraged and guided in caring for them. The villagers harvest the fruits. This activity also ensures maintenance of greenery and prevents soil erosion. The total number of trees distributed to date comes to 35,000.
Distribution of Paddy Seeds
Paddy seeds of Karjat - 3, a variety that yields higher quantities were distributed to 40 farmers in Bhivpuri in Raigad District. The farmers reported an increase of 1.5 times over the yields reaped so far.
Miscellaneous Training Programmes Facilitating Employability / Self Employment / Income generation
Horticulture Training Centre At Talegaon
Tata Power has been sponsoring village youth, boys and girls, for a one-week residential programme at the Horticulture Training Centre belonging to the Govt. of Maharashtra. The participants were drawn from Tata Power’s hydro catchments areas and the villagers in the vicinity of the powerhouse. The centre was established in collaboration with Holland and extends training in horticulture, floriculture in polyhouses, nursery for ornamental plants, organic farming, vermin-compost and vermiculture, drip irrigation and vegetable farming.
Over 114 youths were trained in this centre and many of them have started applying this knowledge in farming. Some have been employed in some of the floriculture projects in the area.
Training In Composite Fish Farming
Very few village tanks in the area are used for fish culture. Since fish growing in village tanks not only generates income, but also helps in keeping the water clean and potable for drinking and other purposes, a training programme was organized for village youth and youth from the fisher folk community in fish farming and aquaculture.
The training involved all the practical aspects of farming like preparation of ponds before releasing fish, manuring, and stocking of fish in calculated ratio to get maximum yield, monitoring the growth, harvesting and post-harvesting technology and marketing. It also covered fresh water prawn farming and pearl culture, repairs to fishing nets, etc.
Training of Gardeners (Malis)
Trained ‘Malis’ have good employment opportunities in hill stations like Lonavala. Adequate training has the potential to generate self-employment for the local community as well. Considering this, Tata Power arranged for the basic training of youth in the Lonavala area in ornamental gardening like simple landscaping, rose gardening, medicinal pants, nursery for forestry and seasonal flowers, budding, vegetative propagation, indoor plants and lawn maintenance, polyhouse maintenance, afforestation, etc.
The training caters to the needs of the marginalised sections of society who are working as casual labourers by upgrading their skills through gardening, so that they can earn higher income than casual labourers.