ANGUL: Adding to the miseries of Talcher Thermal Power Station (TTPS) which continues to wait for the State Government’s approval for its expansion plans, the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) has served notice on the plant to meet its conditions to get consent to operate. A top official of TTPS said unless the plant implements three conditions of the Central pollution board by 2020, it will not be given consent to operate from March, 2021. Ironically, the power plant will automatically wind up operation in March, 2021 for being 50 years old as per the norms set by Central Electricity Authority. In such a scenario, if TTPS does not get the State Government’s nod for its expansion in time, Odisha will lose 460 MW power which it gets from the power station at a cheap rate.
As per the conditions of CPCB, TTPS should bring suspended particulate matter below 100, SOx under 600 and also restrict NOx, another pollution agent, under 100 by 2020. It has also threatened not to give consent to operate if the plant failed to comply with the conditions.Sources in NTPC, which operates TTPS, said while the power plant can comply with the first and third conditions, it will not be able to meet the second requirement as bringing down SOx under 600 will cost about `300 crore. “NTPC cannot invest such a big amount on the plant which will expire in three years’ time,” said the sources.
TTPS has six units having a total capacity of 460 MW. Before it reaches 50 years and shuts shop in March, 2021, a new plant has to come up under its expansion plan. Sources said though NTPC has met all the requisite requirements for expansion of TTPS, the State Government is delaying the approval of the proposal.
As per reports, NTPC plans to set up two power stations having 660 MW capacity each in place of the old plant. It expects to get environment clearance by July following which it has completed all processes to award contract for construction of the new `7,000 crore power plant and expects to get environment clearance by July.