Sri Lanka hydro power capacity boosted by heavy rains

June 01, 2008 (LBO) – Heavy monsoon type rain from Saturday is bringing much needed water to Sri Lanka’s hydro power generation system though parts of the island are threatened by floods. Hydro complexes in the upper reaches of the Kelani River in particular had received more than 100 millimeters of rain yesterday, with some reservoirs already spilling, officials at the state-run Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) said.

The smaller reservoirs or ‘ponds’ in the Laxapana hydro complex including Canyon and Laxapana are spilling, though the larger Castlereigh and Moussakele reservoirs which are used for flood control still have some capacity.

The large Kotmale reservoir which is fed from the Mahaweli River has also received inflows and the Kukule Ganga run-of-the-river plant which is on an upper tributary of the Kalu Ganga (river) is spilling from yesterday, officials said.

In the past 24 hours CEB reservoirs had received enough water to generate 35 million units (GigaWatt-hours) of electricity pushing up total hydro capacity to 720 million units.

Each working day the country generates about 28GWh of energy with more than half coming from thermal power. Increasingly hydro power