High generation cost impedes CSEB’s biggest hydel project
Chhattisgarh State Electricity Board is optimising the
detailed project report for the 500-mw Indira Sarovar hydel power project, the
biggest hydropower initiative in the state. CSEB plans to develop the Rs
3,624-crore project in Godavari basin in joint venture with a public or private
company, with the board remaining a 24 per cent minority partner.
Speaking to Projectmonitor, P.L. Vidhani, Chief Engineer (Civil Project), said
that the expressions for interest invited in December 2006 elicited good
response from a large number of private and public sector companies like Jaypee
Associates and Tehri Hydro Development Corporation. However, the cost of
generation based on the existing DPR is "inordinately high," calling for
reworking of the project report.
"We are reworking the DPR to optimise the cost of generation and the revised DPR
should be ready in three months," added Vidhani. After the DPR is finalised and
the cost of generation is brought down, CSEB will proceed to invite requests for
qualification and proceed with selecting the joint venture partner, he said. The
Indira Sarovar project, also known as Bodhghat hydropower project, will be
located at Barsoor, Dantewada district. It will be constructed over Indravati
river where water will be harnessed through a 90 m high storage dam. Land
acquisition in the construction area is complete, Vidhani noted, adding that
in-principle clearance from the environment ministry is also in place.
For coal-rich Chhattisgarh that has seen significant success in developing
coal-based power plants through the joint venture and tariff-based bidding
route, Bodhghat project is the biggest step in exploiting the state's hydropower
potential of 2,240 mw and is largely untapped.
Chhattisgarh currently has operational hydropower capacity of only 125 mw coming
from two projects - Hasdeobango (120 mw) and Gangrel (5 mw) - both owned by CSEB.
The state electricity board is also in the process of inviting requests for
qualifications for three more projects - Rehar-I (171 mw), Rehar-2 (147 mw) and
Kotrinibra (150 mw).
[May 5-11, 2008]