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Tamil Nadu disappointed at Centre not accepting aid request for wind evacuation

According to reports, the Tamil Nadu government today expressed disappointment over the Centre not accepting its request for financial assistance for transmission infrastructure for wind energy.

Electricity Minister Natham R Viswanathan said TANGEDCO (Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Limited) is the “largest” buyer of wind energy and in spite of the ‘huge cost’ of investment, it was creating necessary transmission infastructure at a cost of Rs 3,774 crore in this sector.

“In this context, I am disappointed to inform that Government of India has not been prompt in accepting our request for financial assistance for transmission infrastructure for wind energy,” he said.

The Centre had “also recently negatived our request for assistance from the National Clean Energy Fund,” he added.

The Minister was speaking at the State Power Ministers Conference at New Delhi and a copy of his address was released by the state government here.

Viswanathan pointed out that the transmission charge per unit of wind or solar energy is four to five times costlier than conventional power and urged the Centre to provide the necessary assistance.

Despite the Expert Appraisal Committee of the Environment and Forest Ministry recommending environmental clearance for Udangudi Super Thermal and Cheyyur Ultra Mega Power Projects, the final clearance is yet to be issued by the Ministry, he said.

Viswanathan urged the Power Ministry to take up with the Environment Ministry expediting of clearances for these projects.

He also expressed concern over “delay” in execution of thermal power projects by Central PSU BHEL.

“Commissioning of North Chennai Thermal Power Project as well as our joint venture with NTPC have been delayed by more than two years by BHEL.I request the Ministry of Power to take up this issue with Ministry of Heavy Industry for early commissioning of these projects,” he added.

The state was speedening up a series of power projects, some of which were “on the verge of commissioning”.

The 600 MW Mettur Thermal Power Plant will be commissioned by this month end, while two units of the North Chennai Thermal Power Project of 600 MW each will be commissioned soon, he said.

He also noted that TANGEDCO has completed its financial restructuring.

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