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NTPC plan to fit plant to plot

Calcutta, Sept. 26: The NTPC is working on a revised plan to set up its 1,600MW thermal power plant in Burdwan on a plot that is half of what it requires.

The Left government had made available 556 acres of the 1,100 acres needed for the project in Katwa. But the Trinamul government asked the utility to either set up the plant on the 556 acres or acquire the remaining land itself.

“The NTPC is willing to work on the 556 acres it already has for the projectů. Work should begin in a year or so,” power minister Manish Gupta said in the Assembly today.

The PSU had worked out that it would need 1,100 acres on the basis of the formula that 0.7 acre is needed to produce 1MW.

The NTPC wrote to the government three months ago expressing its inability to purchase land directly.

“We are trying to reduce the land requirement for the project from 0.69 acre per MW to 0.38 acre per MW by decreasing the size of the ash pit by around 400 acres and that of the coal storage facility by around 100 acres. We are also thinking of vertical expansion,” an NTPC official said.

According to sources, the NTPC is thinking of utilising ash that could be outsourced for use in the cement industry, which would reduce the land requirement for storage by around 70 per cent.

“If we can utilise the ash and store less coal, we could make do with 556 acres. We will request the government to acquire around 12 acres more for railway connectivity and water storage,” the NTPC official said.

“If we get the clearance after making a formal proposal, we could begin work next year and finish the project by 2015, a year behind our revised deadline,” he added.