Norochcholai plant to be commissioned on Feb 10
The Phase I of the Norochcholai coal power plant with a 300 MW
generate capacity will be commissioned on February 10 by President
Mahinda Rajapaksa, the Ministry of Power and Energy said.
The total capacity of the power plant is 900 MW and Phase I of the
project has now been completed. The project, proposed as a low cost
power generation option for the CEB to face serious capacity issues was
delayed due to reasons such as environmental issues and protest from the
people to be displaced from the area.
In 2006 President Rajapaksa was able to get public support to launch
the project providing alternative lands for the displaced people and
using technology to minimize environment impacts.
Ministry sources said that test runs of the generators are now taking
place. Required coal has already been imported and from next month coal
powered electricity will be added to the national grid.
This will enable the CEB to reduce high cost thermal power generation
and reduce foreign exchange drain-out for crude oil.
Phase II of the Norochcholai coal power project will be started in
February this year and the projected cost is $891 million. It will be
funded by the Chinese Government providing concessionary long-term
The Ministry of Power and Energy expects to provide electricity to
all households in the country. Only 87 percent of the households
presently have electricity. The new generation capacity of the CEB will
enable achievement of this goal, the ministry said.