Written by Zulfick Farzan
26 Nov, 2020 | 1:10 pm
Colombo (News 1st); COPE Chairman Prof. Charitha Herath noted the environmental assessment of the Norochcholai Lakvijaya Power Plant done by the Environmental Authority of the North Western Provincial Council alone is not sufficient.
Therefore he recommended having the Central Environmental Authority (CEA) involved in such an important environmental assessment which concerns issues related to air pollution having an impact on the country as a whole.
The COPE Chairman stated given the Lakvijaya Power Plant has a long-term plan in expanding the power supply in the future, the Central Environmental Authority & the Provincial Environmental Authority should carry out these assessments collaboratively.
Prof. Charitha Herath made this recommendation when the Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE) met in Parliament on Tuesday (24) to look into the Lakvijaya Power Plant and its environmental impact said the Department of Government Information.
Officials of the Ceylon Electricity Board pointed out to the committee and its members the loss of the Ceylon Electricity Board in 2019 due to the non-construction of power plants in the country since 2015 is 85 billion rupees.
The Chairman of the COPE Committee directed his attention to the long-term plan of the Lakvijaya Power Plant where it was disclosed that 300 new megawatts are to be added to the power plant by 2023 and another 300 megawatts by 2026.
At this occasion, CEB officials were questioned by MP Patali Champika Ranawaka whether the Lakvijaya Power Plant has the facilities to store and distribute this capacity as stated.
The officials stated that it is being experimented with and that the expansions will be carried out only if the relevant requirements are met.
Furthermore, the committee also focused on fly ash management.
Accordingly, COPE Chairman Prof. Charitha Herath said that it costs Rs. 26 million a year to spray water on fly ash alone.
The Chairman also questioned the mechanism of putting 6,580,000 tons of flying ash stored in a sub-yard into good use.
Responding, the officials stated that they are looking at brick production making use of the stored flying ash.
The COPE Committee noticed the first of the three units operating at the Lakvijaya Power Plant does not operate with the required efficiency and that there had been several instances of breakdowns as a result.
Expressing his views, MP Patali Champika Ranawaka brought into discussion the need to take appropriate action as the Lakvijaya Power Plant meets most of the country’s electricity requirements and a breakdown in the power plant leads to a power failure across the whole country.
Streamlining of the cooling water disposal method, the requirement of looking into the groundwater in this area, examining the quality of coal, the capacity of unloading coal were also discussed at the COPE meeting
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