Kerawalapitiya combined cycle power generation:
Full glow next week
*Capacity 300 megawatts
*Provides future electricity needs
The Kerawalapitiya Combined Cycle power generation plant with a full
capacity of 300 megawatts will come into full operation from next week,
January 15, Power Ministry Secretary M.M.C. Ferdinando said yesterday.
Power and Energy Minister W.D.J. Seneviratne told the Daily News that
the Kerawalapitiya power plant was one of the important steps of
President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s policy in providing electricity for the
needs of the next several years.
The other important plants like Norochcholai and Upper Kotmale were
already and under construction. The power plant starts operating with
oil and is converted to steam power once the engines are heated. This is
known as the combined cycle system and costs much less than the average
thermal power plants that burn large quantities of oil for power
generation. Though it was estimated to cost US $ 390 million for the
project between 2003–2005 a revised cost estimate prepared by local
engineers and approved by a competent Technical Evaluation Committee and
the estimate was revised US $ 222.5 million , the Ministry Secretary
Since the Ceylon Electricity Board could not invest this large amount
of funds the Cabinet approved 15 million dollars was obtained as a loan
with an insurance premium for the loan of two million dollars. Other
expenditure like taxes for imports of machinery and material, interest
during the construction period and operation and maintenance charges and
contingencies etc. added to a total of 72.3 US dollars, he explained.
Shares worth Rs 2.299 billion was bought by the National Savings Bank,
and a similar amount of shares were bought by the Employees Trust Fund.
The Power plant is a public sector organization with a Board of
Directors drawn from the Treasury, LECO, Trade Ministry and Bank of
Ceylon. Its Chairman is Bhadra Jayaweera, Chairman, LECO.