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Coal crunch hits power generation at RTPS

Coal crunch hits power generation at RTPS
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Highlights

Power generation in 5,210 mw Rayalaseema Thermal Power Station (RTPS), at Kalamalla in Muddanur mandal, the main source of power in the district, has been coming down by the day on account of lack of coal supply after the bifurcation of the State.

  • Coal supply from Singareni erratic post-bifurcation
  • Inferior quality coal being provided
  • Supplies from Mahanadi in Odisha also trickling

Kadapa: Power generation in 5,210 mw Rayalaseema Thermal Power Station (RTPS), at Kalamalla in Muddanur mandal, the main source of power in the district, has been coming down by the day on account of lack of coal supply after the bifurcation of the State. It has been facing serious problems during the last two years and just about managing to keep the five units going. The station gets coal from Singareni Collieries at Manuguru, Ramagundam and Manchiryal in Telangana.

Singareni, which is committed to provide coal supply till 2030, is unable to properly implement the agreement. As a result, instead of one lakh tonnes of washed coals (which yields more with less ash), RTPS is said to have secured only ‘very small quantity.’ Recently, although 50,000 tonnes were off-loaded at the Krishnapatnam Port, only two rake loads reached RTPS, while two more rakes were stated to be on the way.

As against the daily coal requirement of 17,000 tonnes and 40 cusecs of water, the station is receiving 13,000-15,000 tonnes from Singareni. Ten days ago the coal stocks fell to zero level. The RTPS officials are just about managing to run the station with daily receipt of supply.

The agreement reached in April 2012 stipulates supply of 38.80 lakh tonnes from Singareni Collieries to RTPS I and II till 2032. During the last several months on an average only one wagon load has been reaching. Consequently, the power generation fell to 150 mw during the last four days. Recently some of the five units were not only being stopped due to lack of coal, but also the plant load factor was reduced. In September, two units were stopped in a single go. Some units were stopped in the name of overhauling.

On the other hand, coal with high ash content is not only hindering power generation, but also consumed more, resulting in loss, it is stated. The loss is also being attributed to inferior quality coal being made available, instead of Grade-15, as specified. Curiously, Singareni coal is being supplied to the thermal station near Krishnapatnam without any hitch. It is reliably learnt that this is happening because of the orders of some top AP Genco officials.

The RTPS is also facing severe problems in getting washed coal from Mahanadi in Odisha. As against the committed two lakh tonnes in 26 wagons a month, only ten wagon loads are being received, according to officials.

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