Sterlite Energy Ltd (SEL), a Vedanta group firm, has so far paid Rs 33.6 crore to the state Environment Management Fund in two tranches.
It deposited Rs 19.22 crore in August for the previous year charges and recently submitted a demand draft of Rs 14.39 crore towards the fund for the six month period between April to October 2012.
According to the government policy, the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) must have to contribute six paise per unit every year to the fund for the power sold outside the state. The fund will act as an agency to reduce the carbon emission in the state.
The payment letter from the Vedanta arm came barely a month after the state government reminded the company about the dues in December. The reminder was seen as a counter offensive by the government which had recently come under fire from Vedanta group for not clearing Rs 744 crore bill for supply of power from SEL and the captive power plant of Vedanta Aluminium. Earlier, the state energy department, in February 2012, had asked the company to contribute to the climate protection fund.
The decision to float the fund was mooted in 2006, on the backdrop of about a dozen of agreements signed by the state government then for thermal power plants. So far, the state has signed MoUs with 29 companies with combined generation capacity of 37,000 MW by the end of 2022.
In January 2012, the Energy Department had requested the designated nodal agency Forest and Environment Department to start the fund. Sterlite Energy, having generation capacity of 600 MW, started production in two phases in November 2010 and March 2011 from its facility in Jharsuguda district. It started selling power outside the state from April 2011. The order to pay to climate fund was also issued to Arati Steel, another independent power producer (IPP) in the state.
Both these companies are allowed to sell power to other states through the national grid network under open access scheme.