11 power plants face gas crisis

Power demand soars to 14,300MW

Special Correspondent

5 April, 2021 12:00 AM printer

Eleven gas-based combined cycle power plants have faced gas supply shortages leading to failure in their electricity generation by around 1349MW against a combined capacity of 3240MW.

The demand of electricity across Bangladesh has soared by 19.4 percent to 14,300MW during this summer.

The power plants are: Haripur 360MW CCPP (HPL), two units of Siddhirganj 120MW each, Haripur 412MW CCPP, Shikalbaha 225MW CCPP, 398MW Ashuganj TPP Unit-3, 4 and 5, Ashuganj 195MW PP (united), RPCL 210MW CCPP, 383MW Bibiyana South CCPP, Baghabari 171MW GT and Bheramara 410MW CCPP.

According to Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB), the generation of electricity has come down to 1891MW from the plants against the capacity of 3240MW.

The requirement of natural gas for the plants was 610 million cubic per day (mmcfd). But the power plants received only 349mmcfd, said BPDB at an inter-ministerial meeting on power supply during Ramadan and hot summer Sunday.

Prime Minister’s Energy Adviser Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid, EMRD Senior Secretary Md Anisur Rahman, Power Division Secretary Md Habibur Rahman, BPDB Chairman Balayet Hossain, REB Chairman Maj Gen Moin Uddin, Petrobangla Chairman ABM Abdul Fattha, Power Cell Director General Mohamed Hossain and other senior officials concerned attended the meeting.

BPDB said the supply of natural gas was 1278mmcfd against the demand of 1539mmcfd in March, 2021 that pushed to come down electricity generation from low cost electricity.

The BPDB also compelled to raise electricity generation from oil-based costly electricity due to shortfall of natural gas.

It has a demand of 1550mmcfd natural gas to make it possible for electricity generation from 65 gas-fired power plants having combined capacity to generate 10872MW of low cost electricity against total capacity of 21,312MW.

The BPDB plans to generate at least 7650MW of electricity from gas fired plants.

The supply of natural gas to gas-based power plants has come down significantly compared to previous year, it said.

In February and March, 2021, the power plants received only 855mmcfd and 1119mmcfd of fossil fuel which was 1069mmcfd and 1137mmcfd during the same period a year earlier.

Prime Minister’s Energy Adviser Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury at the virtual meeting called for electricity conservation. “Don’t misuse electricity even though there is surplus capacity,” he said.

He urged the officials concerned to take vaccines against Covid-19 for ensuring uninterrupted service to the consumers.

The meeting decided to increase the supply of gas to feed power plants.

It asked to the distribution companies to take necessary steps like announcement before any forced power outage.