Frequent power cuts are plaguing Bangladesh amid an intense heatwave. State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid said such blackouts will continue in the coming days.
He added that due to a number of reasons, including a coal shortage, power generation in some power plants has been disrupted, causing power cuts. Nasrul Hamid also indicated that the Payra Power Plant will be completely shut down from June 5 due to the coal shortage.
Nasrul Hamid made this remark after inaugurating the Renewable Energy Research Laboratory and Training Center at Daffodil International University in Savar on Saturday.
He further pointed out, “A power plant [Payra)] is partially operational due to a lack of coal. After 5th June, the operational half will also be closed. Due to this, large swathes of the country are not getting the required amount of power, causing public suffering.
“Currently, Bangladesh is facing over 1,700 MW of load shedding.”
The 1,320 MW Payra thermal Power Plant in Patuakhali is the country’s largest power station. Its two units require around 10,000 to 12,000 tonnes of coal to run at full capacity.
The Bangladesh-China Power Company (PVT) Ltd – the owner of the plant, has been importing coal from Indonesia since its inception in 2018.
Due to the ongoing USD crisis, the Bangladesh-China Power Company (PVT) Ltd owes $390 million to suppliers as coal import bills till April. As the bills have become overdue, the suppliers are refusing to supply more coal, which is now triggering a plant shutdown.
Amid the scorching heat, the shutdown of this plant has intensified the power shortage in the national grid as the plant used to inject around 1,200 MW of electricity daily.