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Power Crisis: Sri Lanka aiming to go for only renewable energy sources within ten years

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka is working on a plan to power the country using entirely renewable energy sources within the next decade, Power Minister Dullas Alahapperuma said.

Responding to questions from Opposition Parliamentarians Alahapperuma told Parliament today Tuesday, March 9, that currently, the government is dependent on oil-fired generators which are placed close to the city of Colombo and are part of the cause for high levels of air pollution.

He said the country is facing a crisis in power supply forcing it to resort to buying power from diesel and furnace oil-fired, privately-owned power plants.

“The crisis was averted somewhat because of the Covid situation which saw a drop in power consumption,” he said.

“Since 2013 no major stable power plant has been joined to the grid,” he said.

He said wind and solar power generating facilities are being expanded with wind plants being equipped with battery storage units to ensure a continuing supply, Alahapperuma said.

He said several schemes are being launched to reduce consumption and increase generation from renewable sources.

“We are planning to equip selected Samurdhi families with 5 kW solar panels they can install on their rooftops as another source of power,” he said.

He added that a scheme to distribute LED bulbs that consume less power to schoolchildren will also be launched.

Opposition Parliamentarians said that when the former government was in power MPs from the current government criticized the then government for purchasing expensive oil generated electricity from private sector providers.

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“We were accused of giving in to the power mafia,” Opposition MPs said. (Colombo, March 9, 2021)

Reported by Arjuna Ranawana

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  1. These are very laudable comments if implemented. But the present action to install LNG plants without finalizing the source of supply of LNG, as well as the CEB planning many more such plants in gross contradiction to the Presidents 80% RE by 2030, does not in Minsitnspire much confidence on the Hon Ministers comments. The one way he can justify his claims is to gazette the target of 80% RE or even the watered down target of 70% RE without further delay. Then the CEB can’t take unilateral planning outside the national policy. Also the Minster must understand that LNG or even our NG cannot be considered as Clean Energy and should not be counted inside the RE targets. Natural Gas is neither clean nor renewable. It is only better than oil and coal in its emissions and if the present rice trends continue will not be cheaper too.
    However, we pin our hopes on the Minsters comments and request him to control the CEB to meet national targets

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