|Save us from power cuts!
A notice appeared recently in the daily press calling all Bulk Supply consumers having standby generators of capacity 100 Kva and above to operate same and generate as much as possible with effect from January 1, 2001 and that such generated units would be purchased by the CEB at the rate of Rs. 7.85 per kwh.
This notice is a forerunner or forewarning to consumers that the CEB is preparing to meet the power shortage in the coming dry season. Although the CEB has long and short term plans to increase the energy demand and set up power units, diesel, gas, coal, hydro to meet the ever increasing demand, but unfortunately due to reasons beyond their control, they are unable to implement them. In saying so, I refer to the Coal plant which should have come into operation a couple of years back, if not for the anti-national objections raised by politicians and religious bodies.
Finding that Trinco was very vulnerable to terrorist attacks, the Coal plant proposed to be sited there was abandoned after extensive studies involving heavy expenditure. Then came Mawella in the southern coast where misdirected politicians intervened and this too was stopped making the CEB look for other suitable sites in the West Coast. Ultimately, the CEM was forced to select Norochcholai after much deliberations. Here the Catholic Church vehemently protested; the main objection being its proximity to St. Anne's Shrine which is about 10 km away.
It is not my intention to discuss the technical or engineering aspects of this site at Norochcholai, as, I must confess in all humility, I am incompetent. This aspect has been gone into by both world fame consultants and our own experts as was evidenced by Dr. Tilak Siyambalapitiya and Carlo Fernando's articles in the press.
Regarding security, the CEB must have given earners consideration and may have had discussions with the Defence Ministry. They would also look at restructuring their own Security Service to meet the situation. Undoubtedly, this matter would have been exhaustively discussed with the Deputy Minister of Defence, who fortunately for the CEB, is also the Minister for Power and Energy. Hence the objections on security grounds by those who are not aware of the CEB's plan are invalid.
Our main concern as consumers is to get the most needed commodity at cheap price uninterrupted and also for economic development of the country, resulting in opening up of new industries and thereby, providing employment to thousands who remain unemployed.
It is therefore hoped that, specially the Catholic Church will be magnanimous in
withdrawing its objections for the sake of the country and its people. Actum est de
republica now it is up to the state. So let us undertake the construction of a Coal
plant at Norochcholai ad majorem Dei gloriam To the greater glory of God
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