Australia government backs low-emission Queensland coal pilot

Australia’s Energy Minister Martin Ferguson has marked the official start of work on a pilot retrofit low-emission power station project in Queensland.

The Callide Oxyfuel demonstration project in Biloela, Queensland, will retrofit an existing power station with technology that burns pulverized coal in a mixture of oxygen and recirculated waste gases to create a high concentration of carbon dioxide.

The carbon dioxide can then be captured, purified and compressed to liquid form ready for transport to an underground storage site.

The technology has the potential to reduce emissions from a typical coal-fired power station by 90 per cent, Ferguson said in a statement.

“This project will lay the foundation stone for the widespread deployment of low emission coal technology, so essential for Australian power generation and for the millions of people across the world relying on coal,” Ferguson said.

Six partners are collaborating on the A$206m ($136m) project, which is based at the Queensland state government-owned CS Energy’s Callide A Power Station in central Queensland. The Australian federal government will put A$50m toward the project, Queensland has committed A$40m and the Australian Coal Association’s Coal 21 Fund will contribute A$68m.

Alstom wins turnkey supply contract for hydroelectric project in India

Alstom Hydro has been awarded a contract worth €78m ($101m) by Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation for the turnkey supply of hydroelectric equipment to the Lower Jurala hydropower project in India.

The project is located on the Krishna river, 7.9 km downstream of the existing Priyadarshini Jurala Dam in Andhra Pradesh state.

The contract includes the design, manufacturing, supply, installation, testing and commissioning of six 40 MW capacity bulb turbine generator units, and is scheduled for completion in the next five years.

AEDB to produce 5000 MW energy within five years in Pakistan

Pakistan’s Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) has announced plans to produce 5000 MW of energy within five to seven years by the stepping up utilizing renewable energy resources.

AEDB’s CEO Arif Allaudin said Pakistan’s first 50 MW wind power project is scheduled to be commissioned in December, with five turbines of 1.2 MW capacity each in the first phase of the project.

China to invest $170bn in grid over next two years

China’s biggest power supplier, The State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC), plans to more than double its investment over the next two years to a total of 1.16trn yuan ($170bn) for grid construction.

“We decided to add about 500bn yuan investment to the original 550bn yuan scheduled for 2009 and 2010, in a bid to help stimulate domestic demand,” said a statement on the corporation’s website.

The planned investment is yet to be approved by the State Council or China’s cabinet. SGCC general manager assistant Lu Jian said the company had already arranged 12bn yuan in the fourth quarter for the development of urban and rural power supply in the country’s central and western regions.

He added that they had received 2.73bn yuan from the central government and the rest was from bank loans and company funds.

In November the State Council announced a 100bn yuan package to accelerate national economic development in the fourth quarter. SGCC was granted 68.2 per cent of the 4bn yuan available to support grid building.

Malaysian group plans $1.4bn plant in Vietnam

Malaysia-based JAKS Resources Berhad Company is completing licensing procedures for building a $1.4bn thermoelectric power plant in the Hai Duong province of Vietnam.

The 1200 MW factory is the first project to be carried out under the form of build/operate/own (BOO), with permitted operation duration of 50 years, said Nguyen Xuan Doan, head of the external economic affairs office of the provincial Department of Planning and Investment.

The project was given the go-ahead by Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and then approved by the Ministry of Industry and Trade. The new plant is due online by 2015.

Indian PM approves $60m IGCC plant grant

Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has sanctioned a special grant of Rs300 crore ($60m) for the nation’s first integrated gasification combined cycle plant, with a capacity of 182 MW.

The proposed project in Vijaywada, Andhra Pradesh, involves an investment cost of Rs950 crore and is a joint venture between Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd and Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation. It is likely to be commissioned by October 2011.

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Bangladesh: A new 240 MW Shiddhirganj power plant is set to go by next summer. The newly-established Electricity Generation Company of Bangladesh is implementing the project to ease the electricity.

China: A large wind power plant with 48 turbines, each with an installed capacity of 850 kW, has gone into operation in East China’s Zhejiang Province, generating 17m kWh of electricity.

India: Unit I of Adani Power’s Mundra SEZ power project in Kachchh district will commission its first power plant in the first quarter of 2009, with the entire 4620 MW power plant completed by the end of 2010.

India: Bihar Power Infrastructure Company (BPIC) has expressed interest in implementing the 2 x 660 MW thermal power project in Baxar district. The project is expected to be commissioned in 2012.

Malaysia: AGNI Inc has announced the start of construction of its first biomass-to-energy plant in Malaysia. Construction of the 10 MW plant, located in Bera, Pahang, is expected to be completed in 18 months.

Pakistan: About $13bn is expected to be invested in the power sector in the years leading up to 2015, according to Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Water and Power.

Thailand: SGC Wind Energy has decided to develop Thailand’s first private wind-power plant in Nakhon Si Thammarat at an estimated cost of 2.3bn Thai baht ($65m). The wind turbine generator, with 30 MW total installed capacity, will be on the Huasai coastline.

Vietnam: As much as 4115bn ($241m) will be invested in the construction of eight hydropower plants in central Da Nang city. Nhan Luat Joint Stock Company announced its investment in these plants, which have a total output of 742.6m kWh per year.

Vietnam: The Ministry of Industry and Trade has announced a plan to build two nuclear power plants. Ninh Thuan nuclear power plant No. 1 would be in Ninh Phuoc District – its two reactors will be put into operation by 2020 and 2021. Ninh Thuan plant No. 2 will be in Ninh Hai District with its two reactors in operation by 2021 and 2022.