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Home KSEB KSEB Limited mulls tie-up with power plant to bid for coal allocation

KSEB Limited mulls tie-up with power plant to bid for coal allocation

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NTPCThe Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) has not entirely abandoned its coal dreams. The state government-run power utility has started exploring options to tie up with a power plant for making a fresh bid for coal block allocation.To stake a claim with the Coal Ministry, KSEB has to show an end-user power plant for the utilisation of the coal. KSEB’s original plan had been to establish a 2,400 MW coal-based plant in Cheemeni, Kasargod. However, local protests have more or less put paid to that project. Now, KSEB is primarily looking at three options, said KSEB chairman and managing director N S Pillai.

The first option involves entering into a tie-up with NTPC Ltd. This will enable using the state’s quota of coal as fuel in any NTPC plant here and the generated power can be evacuated to Kerala.

If this doesn’t work out, KSEB will explore the same strategy with a privately-run power plant. That’s the second option. The third option involves employing a public-sector power plant in Chattisgarh - one of the coal-rich states - for the same purpose.

“‘Obtaining space in the inter-state transmission corridor for bringing home the generated electricity is not a problem. But we have to show an end-user plant for applying for the coal block. We have started discussions with the state government,” Pillai said.In July 2007, KSEB, along with the Odisha Hydro Power Corporation and the Gujarat Power Corporation Ltd, had made a bid for the Baitarani West Coal Block in the Talcher coalfields of Orissa.

In 2008, the three entities floated a joint venture company - Baitarani West Coal Company Ltd - to mine the block. This JV firm still exists, although it lost its claim after the Coal Ministry de-allocated the block in 2012 citing lack of progress. In 2016, Kerala made another bid for a fresh allocation.

The state’s plan was to cart its share of coal to Cheemeni for use at its proposed coal-based plant there. But that did not work out as planned.


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