Sri Lanka to bring back coal

Sri Lanka to bring back coal

Sri Lanka’s power ministry has suggested using coal once again as part of its energy mix in an attempt to lower the long-term generation costs the country faces, according to its central bank.

A new version of the National Energy Policy and Strategies, which included the use of coal, was submitted by the Ministry of Power and Renewable Energy to the Cabinet of Ministers for approval.

In its 2017 annual report, the central bank said: “It is important to determine the optimal mix of energy sources for Sri Lanka in terms of both financial and economic costs, and thereby the long-term generation expansion plan for the country, without considering power projects in an ad-hoc manner.

“The government is currently in the process of evaluating this proposal to decide on the most appropriate technology for coal power plants in the country.”

According to the bank, the state run Ceylon Electricity Board has put forward two 300-megawatt coal plants that do not currently feature in an approved longer term generation expansion plan.

The central bank said: “The government is currently in the process of evaluating this proposal to decide on the most appropriate technology for coal power plants in the country.”

The power utility has also proposed the use of high efficiency low emission (HELE), which operate at high temperatures and pressure in order to improve the efficiency of generating electricity from coal.

In 2015, Sri Lanka cut fuel bills by 25% with the use of coal, despite currency devaluation but the current 900MW coal plant network is now running near full capacity.

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