Bengal seeks central funding for 1,000 MW power project

Kolkata, Aug 12 (IANS) West Bengal has sought 40 percent monetary support from the central government for a Rs.17,000 crore power project in the state, a minister said here on Wednesday.

“We have asked the central government for support over the 1,000 MW Turga Pumped Storage project… Pumped storage projects should be given importance,” West Bengal Power and Non Conventional Energy Sources Minister Manish Gupta told mediapersons here on the sidelines of the energy conclave organised by CII.

The tenders for construction of the project has already been floated.

Gupta said the support has been sought under the central government’s green energy initiative.

The National Clean Energy Fund was set-up by the central government with an objective to provide investment in entrepreneurial ventures and promote research in the field of clean energy technologies.

The minister said the state government is laying impetus to generate energy from solar power and has targeted to generate at least 100 MW of power from rooftop solar panels in the next 2-3 years.

“Our next frontier is solar power and slowly its cost is coming down,” he said.

Gupta said the state has ruled out power generation from nuclear reactors affirming the reactors would not be set-up in West Bengal.

As of now, nuclear energy comprises five percent of the total electricity produced in the country.

Gupta showed concern about the supply and availability of coal to generate thermal grade power.

“In the next 30-40 years, we will not be able to set-up any thermal power plant due to shortage of coal,” he said, adding Coal India Ltd’s production has not been able to meet the demand in the country.

“In the coming years, India will see import of coal rising,” he said.

Pumped storage is the largest form of grid energy storage available in terms of capacity.

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