Sri Lanka and India to fix coal power plant site this month: minister

Jan 11, 2008 (LBO) – Sri Lanka and India will finalize the site for a 500 MegaWatt coal fired joint venture power station this month, energy minister John Seneviratne said. About 25 percent of the householders, mostly in rural Sri Lanka do not have access to electricity.

Seneviratne said an agreement has been sighed with Japan to study the feasibility of natural gas powered generators. Combined-cycle generators (which have coupled gas-turbine and steam stages) could be run on liquid natural gas (LNG).

There have been claims that, if a Japanese combined cycle plant could be built in the Kerawalapitiya area it could be run on LNG.

However energy analysts say the infrastructure to store LNG is expensive and would cost at least 400 million dollars.

The first state of a combined cycle plant in Kerawalapitiya built as an independent power plant is expected to come on stream in July/August 2008.

However, energy sector analysts are keeping their fingers crossed about the first and second quarters of 2008, where there could be power shortages if sufficient rain is not available. Sri Lanka’s state-owned power utility Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) and India’s