Wednesday, 1 December, 2021

6 more coal power plants to be scrapped

The government has decided to scrap another six proposed coal-fired power plants having combined capacity of 7,920 megawatts at Moheskhali Island in Cox’s Bazar.

In June 2021, the government scrapped 10 coal-fired power projects including two in Moheskhaliof 1320MW capacity each.

With these six power plants now, the government is scrapping a total of eight proposed coal-fired power plants which have a combined capacity to generate 10,560MW of electricity at Moheskhali.

Some projects are also being converted to renewable energy-based from coal-based.

Most of the power plants were supposed to be implemented under joint-venture initiative with state-owned Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) at the Island, official sources said.

BPDB has so far acquired 5600 acres of land for setting up eight coal-fired power plants having combined capacity to generate 10,560MW and a mega LNG-based power plant with a capacity 3000MW.

BPDB plansto set up two ultra-super critical power plants with Bay of Bengal Power Company Ltd, a joint-venture plant between BPDB and China Huadian Hong-Kong Co Ltd, a coal plant between BPDB and Malaysian Tenega Nasional Berhad, a joint-venture power plant with KEPCO, South Korea and a mega plant with SEPCO, China.     

But the BPDB didn’t sign any MoU with Malaysian Tenega Nasional Berhad KEPCO, South Korea and a SEPCO, China.

Besides, the government may allocate land at Moheskhali power hub to Orion Group to set up re-gasified LNG-based 726MWplant.

This is an alternative location for the proposed coal-fired power at Gazaria in Munshiganj.

The Plant will be set up under Build Own and Operate (BOO) basis by Orion Power Dhaka Ltd (OPDL) at the BPDB’s rented land in Moheskhali.  

In June 2021, the government scrapped 10 coal-fired power projects considering the environmental concerns as well as delaying implementation of the projects.

Of the plants, the government scrapped four including Mawa 522 MW coal-fired power plant, Dhaka 282 MW coal-fired power plant, Chattogram 282 MW coal-fired power plant and Khulna 565 MW coal-fired power plant owned by Orion Group.

Then the government decided to convert the 522MW Gazaria proposed coal-fired power plant of the same companyto clean fuel RLNG or other renewable energy, officials said.

OPDL submitted a proposal to BPDB about the “substitute” location for implementing the RLNG-based power plant, sources said.

In the proposal, the OPDL said it will implement the plant with GE equipment and is interested to sign a Gas Supply Agreement with state-owned GTCL.

The proposal said it may also implement the project with its own facility of Floating Storage and Re-gasification Unit (FSRU) subject to approval.

O October 10, 2021, the BPDB forwarded the proposal to the Power Division for allocating the substitute location at Moheskhali for Orion Power Plant.

Power Plant will need around 30 acres of land at Moheskhali, officials said.

On July 11, 2021, the Bay of Bengal Power Company Ltd decided to set up RLNG-based power plants replacing coal power plants, according to official sources.

The government already decided not to implement any coal-fired plants at Maheskhali.   

Bangladesh’s national electricity grid will still have 13,313 megawatts of surplus electricity by 2030 despite scrapping 10 proposed coal-fired power projects.

The government officially announced to scrap 10 proposed power projects having a combined generation capacity of 8,451MW of electricity as the projects were not implemented during their stipulated time.

The ministry of power, energy and mineral resources (MPEMR) has decided to cancel these coal-fired power projects as part of the adaptation of new technologies in power generation as it seeks to revise the country’s power system master plan (PSMP).

Earlier, State Minister for Power and Energy Nasrul Hamid said some of the scrapped coal-fired power plants might have the opportunity to implement LNG-fired power plants.

He said,“There is also a plan to increase the import of LNG to set up more gas-based power plants across the country as this fuel is easily available.”

The minister also said there will be a special thrust on renewable energy promotion in the future planning of electricity as part of the country’s commitment to the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF) as Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina is currently the chair of the organisation.

Bangladesh has pledged to the CVF to generate 40 per cent of electricity from renewable sources by 2041, he added.