“20,000 MW nuclear power by 2020 if deal gets through”

Sujay Mehdudia

NEW DELHI: Minister of State for Power Jairam Ramesh said here on Wednesday that nuclear energy was crucial, along with other sources of energy, and that once the India-U.S. nuclear deal got through, the country would be able to produce 20,000 MW of nuclear power by 2020.

“At present the nuclear plants are operating at 48 per cent of their capacity due to shortage of uranium. This is telling on the performance of these utilities and has also impacted the availability of power in the country. Nuclear energy is the need of the hour and we must tap it along with thermal, hydro and non-renewable sources,” he said while announcing that a branch office of the Damodar Valley Corporation would be opened soon in Ranchi.

Mr. Ramesh said the DVC decided to set up two units at its Chandrapura power plant in Jharkhand that would produce 500 mw by 2009. The project would cost Rs. 2,000 crore. The Minister said he reviewed the work at the 2x250 MW Chandrapura project. The project was delayed by over 15 months and commercial operation for the first unit was scheduled to begin by February 2009.

He said the DVC would set up an ITI at its 2x500 MW Koderma project site, also in Jharkhand. In the next four years the DVC would commission a number of projects in Jharkhand, including the 2x250 MW units in Chandrapura, the 2x525 MW units at Maithon in a joint venture with Tata Power, the 2x500 MW units at Koderma, 2x500 MW units at Bokharo and 2x250 MW units at the Bokharo steel plant complex.

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