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Payra power plant unit 2 begins trial run

  • Published at 11:02 am August 27th, 2020
Payra Thermal Power Plant
Aerial view of the coal-fired Payra Thermal Power Plant in Patuakhali, Bangladesh Dhaka Tribune

The 660MW unit (initially generating 100MW of electricity in the trial run) was synchronized with the national grid at 3:45pm Wednesday

The second unit of the country’s biggest thermal power plant—the 1,320MW Payra Thermal Power Plant has started generating electricity on a trial basis.

The 660MW unit (initially generating 100MW of electricity in the trial run) was synchronized with the national grid at 3:45pm Wednesday, confirmed Project Director Helal Shah Abdul Mawla, reports Bangla Tribune.

He said: “The unit is now supplying 100MW of electricity to the national grid on a test basis. For the next month, different tests will be conducted and the plant's power generation will gradually increase to 660MW.”

“After the trial production, necessary preparations will be taken to go into commercial production.”

The first unit of the plant started its test run on January 13 and began commercial operation on May 14 this year.

Construction of the coal-fired power plant started on March 30, 2016, in Kalapara area of Patuakhali.

Bangladesh-China Power Company Limited, a joint venture between Bangladesh's Northwestern Power Generation Company and China's state-owned CMC, has been implementing the project.

The first unit of the power station was earlier scheduled for production in December 2018. But it lagged behind the schedule as the construction of seaports for importing coal and installation of power transmission lines for distribution was delayed.

As a result, the plant was rescheduled for August 27, 2019, to go into operation. But it finally came into production nine more months later.

Concerns about coal-fired power plants

Bangladesh may be hit by its own "carbon bomb" once its 30 coal-based power plants, including the aforementioned one, go fully operational by 2031, suggested a study launched on November 6, 2019. 

The projects will put the country in a "trade deficit" because they will cost an estimated $2 billion or over Tk170 billion annually in coal imports, according to study estimates.

The report also warned that Bangladesh will release an additional 115 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) annually into the atmosphere, once all 30 power plants begin to operate simultaneously.