As concerns over a possible energy crisis in 2018 mounts Sri Lanka’s power regulator yesterday called on the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) to submit a plant construction schedule along with an implementation timeline from 2017 to 2020 before the end of next month.
The Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL) requested the CEB to submit the implementation plan including milestones for each of the power plants identified in the plant schedule for the period of 2017-2020.
The number of power plants to be built from 2017 to 2020 was included in the recently approved Least Cost Long Term Generation Expansion Plan (LCLTGEP) 2015-2034 that was rolled out earlier this month.
The Commission said that the implementation plan should be submitted to the Commission on or before 28 October 2016.
The Commission approved the LCLTGEP 2015-2034 on 15 September 2016.
The Commission emphasised that the power plants listed in the LCLTGEP for the period of 2017-2020, should be immediately constructed and operated in order to prevent a possible power shortage in year 2018 and beyond.
“The demand for electricity is on the rise and we have warned about a possible power shortage in 2018. So timely implementation of the CEB’s approved generation expansion plan is the key for Sri Lanka to sail through this crisis,” PUCSL Director General Damitha Kumarasinghe said.
The plants include two thermal power plants with the capacity of 170MW in the Southern region, 105MW gas turbines, a 300MW natural gas power plant and several renewable energy power plants with the capacity of 655MW that include three major hydro power plants.
Accordingly about 1,230MW would be added to the national grid during next four years. Cancellation of the Sampur power plant would not have triggered a power shortage as it was scheduled to become part of the national grid after 2021. The PUCSL has given the CEB till April 2017 to formulate an alternative to the coal power project and update the long term generation plan.