“Generation of electricity in our country has been facing a serious problem. Today, the electricity requirement of the country is been generated mainly by thermal energy through Diesel generators. Owners of these diesel power stations influenced the electricity board in many ways. We decided to shut down three of these diesel power stations this year to stop that mafia. With this closure there will be more and more attacks against the ministry of power and energy as well as myself. Also there will be false propaganda like the one that appeared last week about the likelihood of a fuel shortage and a power cut. Those people will also try to create trade union actions such as strikes to make the situation worse. But we do not take a step back”. The minister of power and energy Mr. Patali Champika Ranawaka said today (15th May) at a press conference held in the ministry.
According to the plan ACE power generation Matera (20 MW), ACE power generation Embilipitiya (100 MW) and Heladhanavi Power Station Puttalam. (100 MW) has been decided to shut down. With this decision the electricity board will be able to save Rs. 3000-5000 millions which had been paid for the owners as capacity prices.” the minister insisted. The minister further said that the electricity board has to pay the capacity charge even whether they were supplying the electricity to the grid or not. With this closure the amount that is paying as the capacity charge can be saved.
Minister Ranawaka further said,
“Because of the electricity conserving methods we adopted in 2012, the necessity to build up large scale power plants has been ceased. According to the forecasts of the Ceylon electricity board, there would be a demand for electricity of 4000MW by now with the usage of old incandescent bulbs. But with this conservation process now we need only 2300 MW in the night time.
That means 85% of people had been changed to CFL and LED lighting for their domestic lighting purposes. If it has not happened, by now it has to build up more diesel power stations to meet the electricity demand. If the demand continued as forecasted, we would never be able to allow these thermal power plants to retire.
Recently, I made a request to the cabinet to stop 5 tenders which had been supplied fuel to the petroleum corporation without the required formalities. The cabinet granted the permission. The very next day propaganda was launched saying that there would be a shortage of fuel as well as a price hike of oil in the near future. This is how the things happening in this country. We would not give up our efforts towards safeguarding the energy sector with any of these influences. We are initiating the energy conservation process with a steady step of closing down thermal power stations. We expect your fullest cooperation to carry out this process”. The minister added.