The Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has announced that it has offered to enhance 4,100 MW to its prevailing generation capacity in the coming years to stay ahead of the ever growing electricity demand in the state. The power demand of the state is snowballing by 10% to 12% every year.
The power corporation during the current summer season met the highest ever demand of 13,700 MW recently. According to PSPCL sources, this is the highest demand that can be met in Punjab given the existing infrastructure.
As per the latest proposal, the corporation wants to set up with five supercritical thermal power plants of 800 MW at Guru Gobind Singh Super Thermal Power Plant at Ropar at an assessed cost of Rs 24,801 crore. The plant at present has four units each of 210 MW capacity.
The project will be accomplished in two phases. In the first phase, three units each of 800 MW capacity will be commissioned at an estimated cost of Rs 14,372.28 crore. It will require 890 acres for setting up three units. Remaining two units of same capacity will be commissioned in the second phase at a cost of Rs 9,779.21 crore, for which 672 acres of land will be required.
As per the proposal, with the conclusion of the first three units, the prevailing four units of 840 MW capacity will be shut down as has been done in case of Bathinda thermal power plant. The supercritical thermal units will generate power at a cost that will be much lower than the existing units in Ropar.
In the meantime, the proposal to set up a 100 MW solar power plant on the premises of the now shut down Bathinda thermal power plant is also under consideration of the state government. The project is likely to cost Rs 500 crore and is expected to produce 1,700 lakh units annually. It will require about 500 acres of land. Another proposal to operationalize one of the shutdown units at Bathinda using farms stubble as fuel to generate power an additional 60 MW of power is also under consideration of the state government which is looking into the financial feasibility of the project.
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