Even though industrial activity has slowed down due to a host of factors, public resistance to land acquisition being the primary hurdle, the State Government hopes that at least nine thermal projects would come up by next year.
“Nine thermal power projects have made substantial progress and if everything goes well all of them can commission at least one unit each by the end of 2013,” Energy Secretary PK Jena exuded confidence.
The projects _ GMR Kamalanga Energy Limited, Mahanadi Aban Power, Nava Bharat Power, KVK Nilachal, Jindal India Thermal Power, Lanco Power, Monnet Power, Ind Barath Energy and Tata Power _ have made significant progress in execution, Jena said.
The State Government signed MoU with GMR Energy for establishment of 1050 MW thermal power station at Meramundali in Dhenkanal district with an investment of ` 4,540 crore. As per the agreement, the company was supposed to commission all the three units with 350 MW capacity by the end of this year.
The company got coal linkage and obtained statutory clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forests in 2008. It has acquired the land required for the project. However, it failed to meet the deadline due to factors beyond its control.
GMR is all set to commission its first unit in the last quarter of the financial year, official sources said.
KVK Nilachal and Navabharat proposed to set up thermal projects of 1050 MW each are at an advanced stage of commissioning their projects.
While KVK is setting up the power plant at Kandarei near Athagarh, the Navabharat project is coming up at Meramundali.
Minister of State for Energy Arun Sahu reviewed the progress of the power projects in the MoU at a high-level meeting here on Saturday.
The review revealed that Tata Power has acquired land despite opposition from several groups and has made significant progress on other fronts. If things go as per the plan, the company will be able to commission its first unit by the end of 2013 or in the first quarter of 2014, sources said.
Maa Durga Thermal Power which signed an MoU with the State Government in 2010 for setting up a 70 MW power project has also made good progress.
The Government has decided to send a team of officers to the project sites of the companies that signed MoU to make a spot verification of the progress.