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Preliminary studies could have reduced defects in mini hydro-power plants: Gunawardene

25 August 2016 04:23 am - 1     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


An accurate preliminary study had not been conducted before building a majority of mini hydro-power plants in the country and therefore, they have defects, senior environmentalist and environmental lawyer Jagath Gunawardena said.

Most of the errors are prima facie defects, he said. “It is very sad to note that from all the 145 hydro-power plants in the country not even half generate electricity. The reason behind this is that they have no capacity to generate the accepted levels of electricity. They do not have a year round production capacity. At the same time none of them have reviewed the environmental report,” he said.

The mini hydro projects had been initiated by International Non Government Organizations (INGOs) as donations. The concept of mini-hydro power plants were initiated because they were considered as being hundred per cent eco friendly projects. “The concept was totally wrong as although these INGOs have said there were no Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions from mini-hydro power plants, this thought process is wrong”, Mr. Gunawardena said.

He said the electricity generation from mini-hydro power-plants was also not


Addressing the media, Professor Ivan De Silva said there were two main environmental institutions which give permission to construct hydro-power plants in the country. One is the Wildlife Conservation Department and the other was the Central Environmental Authority (CEA)

There are 57 mini-hydro power plants other than the anicuts that run through the Mahaweli River. The tower is feeding the downstream, he said. “If we built a power house to generate one kilowatt, we will lose one kilometre of the extent of a river. Now we have lost 100 kilometres of the Mahaweli River, 29 kilometers were lost from the Kelani River", he said. (Chaturanga Pradeep)

  Comments - 1

  • mfz Thursday, 25 August 2016 08:50 AM

    Utter stupidity..CBSL annual report says NCRE including Mini Hydro generating over 10% of the annual power requirement of the nation and mini hydro itself adds over 300MW of capacity.Mini hydros are built without a reservoir to eliminate the inundation upstream. Major hydros caused cities to vanish in the past. lack of water storage is what causing some of the plants not to generate power through out the year. Mahawali is only 133km and if 1 kilowatt costing 1 km of river means, there shouldn't be a single inch of river left, (300MW means 30,000 kilowatts).. These claims are like some politicos making up accusations against other just to get their hidden agendas passed.

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