In an effort to address power woes of the state, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today said the government planned a Rs 7,000 crore underground hydel power station in Nilgiris district besides the ongoing related schemes, which in all will cost over Rs 20,000 crore.
The first unit of North Chennai Thermal Power plant, third unit of Vallur project and 2x 500 MW each of Tuticorin Power project would start generating power between next month and March 2014, she told the state Assembly.
Making a suo motu statement, she said works towards other major power generation projects have been expedited with international tenders called for the proposed 660 MW Ennore project, the 2x660 MW Ennore SEZ Project and 2x660 MW Udankudi Thermal Power Projects.
Work is on at the 2x800 MW power project at Uppur in Ramanathapuram district, she added.
Jayalalithaa proposed the Sillahalla 2000 MW underground power station at Nilgiris district which will come up at an estimated cost of Rs 7000 crore. The project will be completed in two phases in 8-10 years.
Explaining the technical aspects, she said a 2.25 tmcft water storage reservoir would be created on river Sillahalla, a tributary of Kundah and connected to the Avalanche-Emerald reservoirs. A 2750 metre tunnel would be established for this purpose.
In the second phase, another 2000 MW hydel power station would be set up using the 1500 metre height between Sillahalla and Pillur reservoirs, she said.
Surplus power from windmills and thermal and nuclear units at night would be utilised to draw water to the upper storage facility, which would be used to produce power during peak demand times, she added.
Jayalalithaa also announced a series of proposals aimed at strengthening electricity infrastructure.
Government has prepared a Rs 5,000 crore project for the purpose and plans to get a Japanese loan of Rs 3,572 crore.
The loan will be repayable over 20 years at an annual interest rate of 0.55 per cent, she said.
Further, the Chief Minister announced allocating Rs 8,000 crore towards setting up 56 power sub-stations, ranging from 33-400 KV this year and Rs 500 crore for establishing 20,000 transformers.
Government would also go in for long-term power procurement of 1000 MW for 15 years on a Case-1 bidding basis, starting this October, she said.
She also said High Tension and Low Tension transmission lines would be established over 15,000 km at Rs 850 crore.
There are 2.40 crore existing power connections in Tamil Nadu and 11 lakh new connections--industrial, domestic and agricultural- would be added this year, she said adding all these efforts to add generation capacity were aimed at making the state power-surplus.
Jayalalithaa's announcements come at a time when the state is facing a severe power shortage.