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Chennai-based Neyveli Lignite Corporation Ltd (NLC), a navratna PSU has evinced interest in setting up of a 2000 MW coal-fired power plant in Odisha through a joint venture (JV) with a state government owned PSU. The proposed power plant envisages an investment of around Rs 10,000 crore.
Though the exact location of the project is yet to be decided, NLC prefers to put up the plant in the vicinity of its allocated coal blocks-Talabira-2 and Talabira-3 situated under the command area of Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd (MCL).
"Top company executives of NLC had a meeting with the Chief Minister recently on their plan to establish a 2000 MW power plant in the state. The power plant is to be set up by forging a JV with any of the state PSUs- Odisha Hydro Power Corporation (OHPC), Odisha Power Transmission Corporation Ltd (OPTCL) or Grid Corporation of Odisha Ltd (Gridco). NLC is the only Central PSU with core competencies in both power generation and coal mining”, a senior government official told Business Standard.
It may be noted that the state government had inked Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with 29 independent power producers (IPPs) for setting up coal-based power plants with combined power producing capacity totaling to 37,000 MW.
As per the state energy department's estimates, six IPPs are scheduled to commission their coal-fired power plants by 2013- Maa Durga Power Company Ltd, GMR Kamalanga Energy Ltd, Ind-Barath Energy (Utkal) Ltd, Jindal India Thermal Power Ltd, Monnet Power Company Ltd and Lanco Babandh Power Ltd with a total envisaged capacity of 7050 MW.
The state's share from these power stations is pegged at 1200.5 MW of which the net availability will be 939 MW.
The state's power availability is expected to reach 4455 MW by 2013, higher than the power demand of 3726 MW projected by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).
Meanwhile, to discourage further IPPs to invest in power generation in Odisha, the state energy department plans to incorporate a clause at the MoU level, making it mandatory for the coal-based power plants to share 25 per cent free power with the state.
"Henceforth, we will make it compulsory for any IPP setting up a coal-based power station to share 25 per cent free power with the state”, said the official.