Dabhol Power Station

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Dabhol Power Station
Dabhol Power Station is located in Maharashtra
Dabhol Power Station
Location of Dabhol Power Station
Country India
Location Anjanwel, Ratnagiri district, Maharashtra
Coordinates 17°33′35″N 73°9′59″E / 17.55972°N 73.16639°E / 17.55972; 73.16639Coordinates: 17°33′35″N 73°9′59″E / 17.55972°N 73.16639°E / 17.55972; 73.16639
Status Operational
Commission date 2000
Owner(s) Ratnagiri Gas and Power
Power generation
Primary fuel LNG

Dabhol Power Station is located near Anjanwel village in Ratnagiri district, about 160 kilometres (99 mi) south of Mumbai. The power station was a built by the Dabhol Power Company (DPC), which was a joint venture of Enron, General Electric, Bechtel and Maharashtra Power Development Corporation.[1] At the start of its construction in 1992, the Dabhol power station was the biggest foreign investment in India.

Due to a political controversy related to the pricing of power from the station and allegations of favoritism,[2] the operation of the Dabhol power station was interrupted on several occasions. Subsequently, operations were interrupted due to the Enron bankruptcy and disputes between Enron's creditors and the Government of Maharashtra (GoM). The power plant was finally rehabilitated and taken over by Ratnagiri Gas and Power (RGPPL), which successfully revived and operates the plant.[3]

History[edit]

Construction of the Dabhol Power Station was planned to be completed in two phases. The first phase was a 740MW unit to use naphtha as the fuel. Construction started in 1992 and finally completed in May 1999.[2] The next phase was 1700MW of units using liquefied natural gas (LNG) as fuel. At its height, the construction of the Dabhol power station employed 15,000 people.[4]

The power project ran into trouble due to the power purchase agreement between the DPC and the state's power utility, Maharashtra State Electricity Board (MSEB). The agreement negotiation lacked transparency, and details had not been made public.[5] In 2000, MSEB was paying DPC Rs. 4.67/kwh while the tariff that MSEB charged its customers was Rs. 1.89/kwh.[5]

By 2001, there were a number of political controversies brewing over the power purchase agreement. The price paid by MSEB for power from the Dabhol station was over twice that from other power stations in the state.[2] With escalating tensions between MSEB, GoM and DPC, operation of Phase I and construction of Phase II came to a halt in May 2001. With the Enron bankruptcy, Enron's stake in DPC was bought out by GE and Bechtel.

The plant was moth-balled for 5 years, while the various claimants, including MSEB, GoM, GE, Bechtel, Indian banks and the Government of India, settled their disputes over payments.

In May 2006, after protracted negotiations, state-owned NTPC Limited and GAIL agreed to take over the power station. RGPPL was floated as a joint-venture between these two companies to own and operate the Dabhol power station.[3] However, the revival proved difficult due to 3 catstrophic breakdowns in the equipment supplied by GE.[6]

After repairs to the equipment, the power station had resumed operations at 100% of its installed capacity of 1967 MW in 2010.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dabhol Power Company "Case Study: Dabhol Power Company Limited". 2009-10-12. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
  2. ^ a b c "Enron's eight-year power struggle in India". Asia Times. 2001-01-18. Retrieved 2011-11-01.  (dead link)
  3. ^ a b "Home". Ratnagiri Gas and Power Private Limited. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
  4. ^ Enron's Dabhol Power project is now a rusty ghost town
  5. ^ a b Bajaj, Vikas (2010-03-22). "India’s Woes Reflected in Bid to Restart Old Plant". The New York Times. Retrieved 2011-11-01. 
  6. ^ Bajaj, Vikas (2010-03-22). "India's Woes Reflected in Bid to Restart Old Plant". The New York Times.