Mar 05, Colombo: Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa says he expects to complete the supply of electricity to the entire country by the end of this year.
He was speaking at the laying of the foundation stone for the construction of Sri Lanka’s first Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) power plant at Kerawalapitiya, Wattala today (05). The plant is expected to add 350 megawatts electricity to the national grid.
The power plant has been designed in accordance with international standards with minimal environmental damage.
The power plant, which will be constructed in two phases, will have the highest efficiency F class gas turbines installed in a local power plant.
The Kerawalapitiya Power Plant is a Combined Circle Power Plant and in the first phase will generate 220 megawatts through the installation of a gas turbine, which is expected to be completed within 21 months.
The second phase will add another 130 megawatts to the national grid via a steam turbine, which is scheduled to be completed in another 12 months.
The Ministry of Power and Energy, the State Ministry of Renewable Energy, the Ceylon Electricity Board and Lakdanav Company are jointly implementing this project.
Speaking at the event, Prime Minister Rajapaksa said the whole world today makes decisions with a focus on energy and energy is so important to our lives.
“Foreseeing the potential crises in the energy sector, we built the coal power plant in Norochcholai without relying solely on hydropower. Despite all the rumors and tales, it was a great help in overcoming the power crisis during recent droughts. We did not stop there. We have launched wind farms, thermal power plants, the recently opened solid waste power plant as well as solar energy. We are doing all this to provide electricity to the people at low cost,” he said.
The Premier said the 350 MW Natural Liquefied Gas (LNG) Power Plant will be built using the world’s highest technology.
“This is a huge leap in energy production in this country. We always went to new ways to generate energy in Sri Lanka. The first coal power plant, the first thermal power plant, the first wind power plant, and recently we opened the first solid waste power plant. We are currently feeding our power grid. Today, this power plant will be launched as the first Liquefied Gas (LNG) Power Plant in Sri Lanka,” he commented.
“The Ministry of Power and Energy told me that the first phase of this power plant will be completed in about 21 months. In the first phase it is expected to generate 220 MW. It can only be done if we give full responsibility to the talented local engineers who have been nurtured by free education. The second phase will be completed in a year. The second phase is expected to generate 130 MW. We will work to fully meet the energy needs of the country within the next 4 years.”
“The eco-friendly liquefied natural gas (LNG) power plant which commences construction at Kerawalapitiya today will meet 13% of the country's electricity demand. This is the development of a country. We must identify national priorities in development.”
The Prime Minister said the plant will enable to provide relief to the people by reducing electricity bill and he sees uninterrupted power supply as a responsibility of the government.
“We have so far provided electricity to 99.8% of the country. We have about 84,000 people left. We hope to complete 100% of the country’s electricity supply program by the end of this year.”
The Premier said it is a great strength that Minister of Power Dullas Alahapperuma is working at lightning speed at a time when electricity has been decided as one of the first numbers in the list of basic human needs.
Minister of Power Dullas Alahapperuma, State Minister of Renewable Energy Duminda Dissanayake, State Ministers Susil Premajayantha, Nimal Lansa, Secretary to the Ministry of Power and Energy Wasantha Perera, Chairman of the Ceylon Electricity Board Engineer Vijitha Herath, Chairman, Lakdanavi Company Eng. U.D. Jayawardena and others were present on the occasion.