Uchpinda power station

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The Uchpinda power station is a 1,440 megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant under construction by RKM Powergen Private Limited in Chhattisgarh, India.

Location

The satellite photo below (undated) shows construction underway on the power station in Uchpinda village.

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Background

In 2012 the India Central Electricity Authority listed the estimated commissioning date as 2013 for Unit 1 and 2014 for Units 2-4.[1]

In June 2014 it was reported that India’s newly-elected government had cleared the way for several long-delayed power projects to proceed, after they were held up by issues including environmental and financing problems. Projects listed included the Uchpinda power station.[2]

According to a 2014 ICRA investment report on the project, the delays were "due to land compensation related issues and later due to delay in securing funding for cost overruns," as well as with problems in coal block allocation. The project cost had been revised to Rs. 8981 crore from Rs. 6654 crore, and the planned commissioning was 2015.[3]

Unit 1 was commissioned in June 2015,[4] and Unit 2 was commissioned in January 2016. Units 3 and 4 are planned for late 2016-2017.[5][6]

In April 2017 it was reported that the plant had started supplying 200 MW of power under power purchase agreement to several power distribution companies in Uttar Pradesh. TAccording to a company statement, "The balance of 150 MW will commence pending an approval from UPPCL subsequent to the Champa-Kurukshetra 800 kV HCDC pole and 765 kV Jaipur-Bhiwani transmission line which was commissioned recently."[7]

Unit 3 was commissioned in September 2017. Unit 4 is planned for 2018.[8]

Unit 4 listed as financially stressed

In March 2018 the plant was listed among 34 financially stressed power plants in India, with total outstanding debt of Rs 9,145.51 crore.[9]

According to the India Ministry of Power (August 2018): "Due to non availability of [consent to operate], Developer is not able to commission the Unit 4. Tapering coal linkage has been cancelled by [South Eastern Coalfields Limited]. [Power purchase agreement] (PPA) issue- [Chhattisgarh State Power Transmission Company Limited] has expressed inability to off-take power as per PPA."[10]

Coal supply

In September 2013 project sponsor Mudajaya Corp Bhd signed an agreement with India-based South Eastern Coalfields Ltd for the supply of coal to the power station for the next 20 years. The annual contracted quantity of coal supply was 1.69 million tonnes.[11]

Opposition

The magazine Tehelka reported that land aquisition for the plant[12] has resulted in local opposition:[13]

TWO-AND-A-HALF HOURS from Akaltara lies Dabhra block, a region that is set to make history for all the wrong reasons. Around nine thermal power plants have been planned in a 10-km radius. Work has begun on three and land acquisition process is on for two more. Most others are in process of getting environment clearances.
A total of around 10,000 acres will be required from Dabhra alone. There were protests when RKM Powergen, which is setting a plant for 1,440 MW, started acquiring land in 2009. Many were arrested and at least 11 were put behind bars under the charges of attempting to murder. Local villagers say that around seven or eight of them are still in jail.
Khileshwar Jayaswal, an advocate fighting the cases of the aggrieved, and a land loser himself, says, “Around 400 villagers, who were engaged in making stonegrinders, have gone out of job due to the land acquisition. Those who did not own the land are now left with nothing.”

Project Details

Sponsor: RKM Powergen Private Limited
Parent company: Mudajaya Corp Bhd
Location: Uchpinda village, Janjgir-Champa district, Chhattisgarh
Coordinates: 21.8863997, 83.1208098 (exact)
Status: Operating (Units 1-3); Shelved (frozen in construction) (Unit 4)
Nameplate capacity: 1,440 MW (Units 1-4: 360 MW)
Type: Subcritical
Start year: 2015 (Unit 1); Unit 2 (2016); Unit 3 (2017)
Coal Type:
Coal Source: South Eastern Coalfields, India
Source of financing:

Citizen groups

Articles and resources

References

  1. Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country, Central Electricity Authority, September 2012
  2. Tildy Bayar, "India expedites delayed power projects," PEI, 20/06/2014
  3. "RKM Powergen Private Limited," ICRA, Dec 2, 2014
  4. Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country, Central Electricity Authority, April 2015
  5. "Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country," Government of India Ministry of Power, March 2016
  6. "Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country," India CEA, July 2016
  7. "Mudajaya's plant in India starts sale of electricity," The Star Online, 4 April 2017
  8. “Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country,” India Ministry of Power, Sep 2017
  9. [https://www.business-standard.com/article/companies/adani-essar-jaypee-lanco-power-plants-in-list-of-34-stressed-projects-118030801003_1.html "Adani, Essar, Jaypee, Lanco power plants in list of 34 stressed projects Adani Group's Korba West has an outstanding debt of Rs 3,099 crore while its Tirora project in Maharashtra has outstanding debt of Rs 11,665 crore,"] BS, March 8, 2018
  10. "Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country," Government of India Ministry of Power, August 2018
  11. "Mudajaya, India company ink 20-year coal-supply pact," The Star Online, September 10, 2013.
  12. "Executive Summary: RKM Powergen Private Limited, Chapter 1 - Project Description" enviscecb.org, accessed June 2012
  13. Prakhar Jain, "How to destroy a district," January 21, 2012

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