Dabhol resumes power generation

Dabhol resumes power generation

New Delhi: The beleaguered Dabhol power plant in Maharashtra restarted generating electricity last week after state-owned Petronet LNG Ltd resumed gas supplies.

The plant started operations after Supreme Court vacated a stay granted by Gujarat High Court on pooling of LNG prices to make fuel affordable to the power plant.

“The (Dabhol) project has begun operations with 600 MW five-six days ago," Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said on the sidelines of an NTPC programme here.

The Dabhol plant, now owned by Ratnagiri Gas and Power Pvt Ltd, is a joint venture between NTPC, GAIL (India) Ltd, Maharashtra state electricity board and IDBI-led lenders.

Petronet’s customers including Gujarat State Petroleum Corp filed a lawsuit last month challenging the gas supplier’s decision to charge a higher uniform price for all buyers. The price - an average of spot and long-term contracts - would raise rates for some customers by as much as 52 per cent while lowering charges for Dabhol. Gas is now being supplied at $5.8 per million British thermal unit.

The Dabhol plant, which will have a total capacity of 2,150 MW after all three units start, has started selling 300 MW to Maharashtra. The second unit, which is currently operational, has a capacity to generate 740 MW.

Shinde said the gas is being sourced from Petronet’s Dahej LNG terminal in Gujarat.

The minister also said the government was in the process of awarding two more ultra mega power projects. The first two such projects at Mundra in Gujarat and Sasan in Madhya Pradesh with a capacity of 4,000 MW each have already been awarded to Tata Power and Reliance Energy.