In the wake of cheaper and environmental-friendly coal blocks
allotment in Odisha, Neyveli Lignite Corporation India (NLC) has decided to scrap its 4,000 megawatts (MW) coal-based thermal power plant at Sirkali, Tamil Nadu.
The Navaratna company, which comes under the coal ministry, had earlier received administrative sanction to acquire 1,190.59 hectares of land issued by Tamil Nadu
government for the thermal power plant at Sirkali, Nagapattinam district. The project was conceived in 2010 and a power purchase agreement was signed in 2011.
However, the company has received an allotment of Talabira II and III coal blocks
of 20 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) capacity in Odisha. It was expected to meet the requirement of the proposed Odisha Thermal Power Station and the joint venture project with NTPL. Therefore, the company did a reassessment on the economic viability of the Sirkali project in the changed scenario.
On assessment, the cost of power from the proposed pithead plant, including the cost power wheeling emerged as a cheaper and environmentally-friendly. This saves the firm the transportation cost of coal by road, rail and sea over a distance of around 1,650 kilometers to the earlier envisaged power plant at Sirkali, said the officials.
In view of this, the board of directors of the company decided not to pursue the Sirkali Thermal Power Project, they said.
At Talabira, the company applied to the state government for the first-stage forest clearance and would later approach the Ministry of Environment and Forest and Climate Change for the issue of environmental clearance, said the company's annual report.
Around 383.18 acres of government non-forest land in Jharsuguda and 91.270 acres of land in village Khinda has been handed over to the company.
The other procedures to commence the mining operations are also progressing with works issued to engineering consulting firm RITES for the preparation of feasibility study report for dispatching coal through rail.
It is proposed to develop and operate the above mine through the appointment of mine developer & operator (MDO).