Sri Lanka's govt. abandons Trinco coal power plant project

[TamilNet, Saturday, 17 May 2003, 12:39 GMT]
The United National Front (UNF) Government has abandoned the proposal to construct a thermal coal power plant in Trincomalee following strong protests by environmentalists and the people of Trincomalee. The 300 megawatt plant is now planned for construction in Hambantota, deep south of the island, power and energy ministry sources said.

The Power and Energy minister Mr.Karu Jayasuriya visited Trincomalee a few months back and inspected a site close to the Trincomalee harbour to construct the proposed controversial thermal coal power plant. The UNF government selected Trincomalee when the Catholic Bishop of Chilaw opposed the move to site the project at Nooraichcholai in the northwestern province, sources said.

An agitation against the project was launched by a group of leading citizens in Trincomalee led by human rights activist Attorney-at-law Mr.K.Sivapalan, sources said.

Trincomalee district parliamentarian Mr.R.Sampanthan also met the Minister of Power and Energy Mr.Karu Jayasuriya and lodged a strong protest against siting the project which could damage the environment of the district, sources said.

The Power and Energy Ministry has now decided to move the location to Hambantota and expects to solicit assistance from the private sector to build the plant.

The ministry will receive tenders for the construction by next July, sources said.

 

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