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CEB engineers suspend TU action

Comments / {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}} Views / Wednesday, 13 June 2018 00:00

By Chathuri Dissanayake

The Ceylon Electricity Board Engineers’ Union yesterday suspended their month-long trade union action after the power regulator granted approval for their long-term generation base plan.

However, the non-cooperation with the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) will continue until the ExCo of the union takes a final decision on the matter, CEB Engineers’ Union President Saumya Kumarabandu revealed.

The union took up a Work-to-Rule campaign demanding that the PUCSL approve their base plan for long-term power generation submitted in the middle of last year. The move came after a series of lobbying efforts by the union to get the plan approved failed after the PUCSL granted approval for an optional plan sans coal, also submitted by the CEB. The union demanded coal plants be included in the power generation mix.

The union claimed that the conditions outlined by the PUCSL were contradictory.

According to Kumarabandu, PUCSL’s condition to include 1,400 MW in LNG plants to be developed on a government-to-government basis contradicts the clause to comply with Section 43 960 of the Sri Lanka Electricity Act.

“The proposed LNG plants are to be set up as two 500 MW plants and another 400 MW plant but according to the act we cannot set up any plant above a capacity of 300 MW,” he told the Daily FT.

Further, he claimed that such a move was unwise as the country’s transmission system was unable to handle such a load from a single plant.

The union plans to take up the matter with the regulator in the future, Kumarabandu said. However, at present they are satisfied that the base plan has received approval.

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