Home > In the Media > What’s the real cost of nuclear plant in Maharashtra?

What’s the real cost of nuclear plant in Maharashtra?

February 25, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Alok Deshpande in DNA

Feb 25, 2011

Controversy does not seem to desert the Jaitapur Nuclear Power Project (JNPP). At a time when chief minister Prithviraj Chavan is planning a visit to the site of the ambitious endeavour to meet the locals who have maintained their anti- JNPP stand, it is revealed that the capital cost of the 9,900MW project has still not been decided.

And this is in spite of signing a deal with AREVA, the French company which will be supplying nuclear reactors for the project.

Talks regarding the cost are in progress, claims Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL), the enterprise building the project.

Denying the findings of the report prepared by the Coalition for Nuclear Disarmament and Peace (CNDP), where it was estimated that the entire project cost could involve Rs2,00,000 crore of public money (DNA, February 14), NPCIL has mentioned that “discussions between NPCIL and AREVA are in progress, so that the capital cost is optimised by sharing the scope of the responsibilities with regard to construction, erection of the plant facilities by NPCIL”.

According to Ranjit Raj Kakde, NPCIL’s general manager (Corporate Communications), these reports are nothing but efforts to spread misinformation.

“The findings which this report has mentioned are based on foreign projects. But the conditions in India are different and we are in talks with AREVA to decide the actual cost of the project,” he said. Kakde mentioned that only after the decision on actual capital cost is finalised, the per unit cost of energy will be decided.

“NPCIL is selling power from nuclear power plants at competitive rates. As a principle, the capital cost of all imported NPP units in India should be such that the unit energy cost from the above plants is comparable with the prevailing tariff of power plants of Indian origin constructed at the same period. Same principle is being followed for the EPR units at Jaitapur site,” he added.
However, the uncertainty over the total cost of the project was one of the points raised by the anti-JNPP activists in the past.

“Without deciding the exact capital cost how can NPCIL go into any serious agreement with AREVA? Being a government concern NPCIL should release all the minute details of the project to be discussed thoroughly,” said Advait Pednekar of Konkan Bachao Samiti.

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