Chennai-based Neyveli Lignite Corporation Ltd (NLC), a navratna public sector unit, has evinced interest in setting up a 2,000-Mw coal-fired power unit in Odisha through a joint venture (JV) with a state government owned PSU. The proposal envisages an investment of around Rs 10,000 crore.
NLC would prefer to put it up in the vicinity of its allocated coal blocks,Talabira-2 and Talabira-3, situated under the command area of Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd.
“Top executives of NLC had a meeting with the chief minister recently on their plan,” a senior government official told Business Standard. “The plant is to be set up by forging a JV with any of the state PSUs —Odisha Hydro Power Corporation, Odisha Power Transmission Corporation or Grid Corporation of Odisha Ltd. NLC is the only central PSU with core competencies in both power generation and coal mining,”
The state government had earlier signed memoranda of understanding (MoUs) with 29 independent power producers (IPPs) for setting up coal-based plants with a combined capacity of 37,000 Mw. The state energy department says 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 7,050 Mw. The state's share from these power stations is pegged at 1,200 Mw, from which net availability will be 939 Mw.
Power availability is expected to reach 4,455 Mw by 2013, higher than the power demand of 3,726 Mw projected by the Central Electricity Authority. “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 quoted earlier.