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* New power plant in Sri Lanka's north connects Jaffna to national grid from next month
Tue, Aug 27, 2013, 12:37 pm SL Time, ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Aug 27, Colombo: A new thermal power plant built in the Northern Province will connect the Jaffna peninsula to the national grid when it is opened next month.

Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa will declare open the newly built Chunnakam Grid Substation in Jaffna on September 15.

After 26 years of isolated operation the Peninsula will receive the power from the national grid when the 67 kilometers long transmission line from Kilinochchi to Chunnakam connects the newly built 63 MVA Chunnakam Grid Substation with Kilinochchi Grid Substation.

Sri Lanka's power authority Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) reconnected its 132 kV high voltage Grid with Jaffna Peninsula on August 19 and the Chunnakam new Grid Substation would undergo final commissioning tests during the period up to its opening.

With the new connection, 24 MW Uthuru Janani Power Plant owned by CEB and 18 MW privately owned Northern Power Plant get connected to the single grid network of the country.

Kilinochchi Grid Substation was earlier connected to the 132 kV high voltage Grid in September 2012.

The new Chunnakam sub station, constructed at a cost of Rs. 1.8 billion, will supply 63 megawatt of direct power to fulfill the need of around 120,000 houses and small and medium scale industries in the peninsula.

Earlier the Jaffna Peninsula was powered by the power from the Lakshapana hydropower plant but after 1990 Jaffna got isolated from the national grid due to terrorist activities. The north was then powered through large scale private generators.

The lack of connection from the national grid to power the war-torn region was an obstacle for setting up industries and with the connection and the new power plant economic development in the peninsula will be boosted.

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