The ongoing COVID-19 related shutdowns has had a profound impact on the electric demand profiles worldwide, as governments put strict mitigation and/or suppression measures in place. The global electrical demand has plummeted around the planet in the last few weeks, with countries such as Spain and Italy experiencing more than 20% decrease in their usual electric consumption. In view of such massive electric demand changes, electricity network operators are facing unprecedented challenges in scheduling energy resources, as short-term energy forecasting systems struggle to provide an accurate demand prediction. In fact, power systems operational reliability highly depends on an accurate projection of the future demand and scheduling an appropriate mixture of generation resources accordingly. In particular, short-term forecasts such as day-ahead are critical in managing the market operation uncertainty. Thus, recent changes expose operators to severe technical and financial risks caused by the demand imbalance, further reinforcing the adverse economic impacts of the pandemic.
The current paper presents and analyzes the impacts of the COVID-19 related measures on electric demand of an Indian metropolitan area, referred to here as the City. The paper investigates the most recent data to provide a systematic analysis of the change in the electric demand. In addition, it proposes strategies to mitigate the impact on forecasting performance.