MoU signed with Western Coal Fields for supply of coal. According to APGenco officials, movement of the assured quantum of coal would not be a problem for the power utility as the stocks were lying at an SCR siding 20 km away from Balharshah in Maharashtra.

The Energy Department, which is facing a crisis in power generation on account of shortfall in fuel, got some relief, albeit temporarily, on Monday when it signed a memorandum of understanding with the Western Coal Fields for supply of coal coupled with Union Power Ministry’s decision to allot 177 MW power from the NTPC.

Sustained efforts of the government paid dividends when the AP Power Generation Corporation received a communication from the Power Ministry about allocation of power from the NTPC’s Jajjar power plant. Simultaneously, the APGenco officials inked an MoU with the WCF for one-time supply of four lakh tonnes of coal to the State.

According to APGenco officials, movement of the assured quantum of coal would not be a problem for the power utility as the stocks were lying at an SCR siding 20 km away from Balharshah in Maharashtra. While readying the rakes to transport the commodity, the APGenco officials have chalked out plans to move a major chunk of coal to Dr. Narla Tatarao Thermal Power Station at Vijayawada which is already grappling with acute shortage of the raw material.

The NTTPS, which has coal linkage from the Mahanadi Coal Fields (MCF), ran into trouble following a continuing agitation in Orissa which had ‘political overtones’. As against the requirement of 30,000 tonnes coal every day, the plant is receiving 18,000 tonnes. Of this, close to 14,000 tonnes are being despatched from the MCF while imported coal constituted another 4,000 tonnes. “We need 12,000 tonnes more to meet the daily requirement,” a senior official said.

Officials are accordingly planning to move 8,000 tonnes, four rakes a day, to NTTPS to ensure that the thermal power plant has adequate buffer stocks. “The NTTPS will have a buffer stock for a minimum of six days within a month if we move four rakes a day,” the official said.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, who reviewed the power supply situation with senior officials, directed them to explore avenues for purchase of power from other States. The officials had been asked to operate the existing plants to optimum levels so that the power shortage was overcome to some extent.

He wanted the senior officials led by senior official in Chief Minister’s office G. Sai Prasad to be in touch with the Railway authorities to ensure speedy movement of rakes for transporting coal to the thermal plants.