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MP govt asks for more coal, says its thermal units not getting enough

Shahana Joshi  |  New Delhi 

The Madhya Pradesh government has asked the Centre to increase the amount of coal allocated to thermal power stations in the state. Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said in a meeting held recently with the coal ministry that the amount presently available and allocated in the state was not enough to sustain the thermal power operations there. 

MP has installed power generation capacity of 2,807 Mw. Chouhan said power stations in MP had been asked to achieve 74.4 per cent plant load factor by the Central Electricity Authority. To achieve this, the state would need a coal allocation of about 17 million tonnes. But, according to Chauhan, only 15 mt is being received by the state from the coal ministry. In 2009-10, only 13.86 mt was allotted, which prevented the thermal power plants from utilising their full capacity. 

“We want the ministry to also address the problem of coal linkages and the sourcing of coal. There are also some projects that have not received coal linkages and this has hampered production in the state,” said Chouhan. 

Some of the projects he mentioned included a project by Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd, where two plants have been set up with a capacity of 800 mw, needing coal allocation of eight mt. 

The state also requires a coal allocation of 7.9 mt for another two power projects. “In addition to this, we also need a coal allocation of about 84 lakh tonnes for two other 600-Mw expansion projects,” stated Chouhan. 

These projects are in accordance with the 12th five-year plan and to achieve the targets set forth, coal needs to be allocated to the state as soon as possible, Chouhan said in the meeting. 

He also raised the issue of quality. The coal available in the Dhumri and Kusmundi areas in MP were of a lower quali. Higher-quality coal from the state was being sent to power plants in other states. This had led to an increase in transport and maintenance costs.

First Published: Sun, May 16 2010. 19:16 IST