Sri Lanka Electricity Board needs two more weeks to restart coal power plant

Jan 25, Colombo: Sri Lanka’s power authority Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) predicts that at least two weeks will be need to restart the power generation at the currently nonfunctional Norochcholai coal power plant after repairs.

The state-run CEB incurs heavy losses purchasing power from private sector at higher rates to meet the demand when Norochcholai coal plant fails. The two-week shutdown will cost the CEB at least 168 million rupees.

Power and Energy Minister Patali Champika Ranawaka has said that every non-operational day has cost the CEB Rs. 80 million.

The 300-megawatt thermal power plant has failed again Tuesday for the third time in a period of two months. The operations of the coal power plant were suspended due to a technical failure on January 18. The plant failed on January 6 due to a fire in coal crushers.

The coal power plant had failed for 40 days since it commenced generation in March last year.

CEB Chairman Prof. Wimaladharma Abeywickrema said the repairs and services are now underway.

A CEB trade union on Tuesday blamed the frequent failures on the Chinese company contracted to maintain the plant.

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