Northeast power woes to be tackled

Agartala, Aug 28 (IANS) Power ministers and top officials of the northeastern region will meet in Agartala next week to finalise the strategy to complete the power projects under construction in the region and to deal with transmission problems, a Tripura minister said here Wednesday.

The two-day meeting of the North Eastern Regional Power Committee (NERPC) comprising Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura will be held here Sep 4-5.

"The northeastern region has been facing numerous problems in the power sector. The NERPC would take some specific steps to complete the under construction power projects in the region in their re-scheduled time frame," Tripura Power Minister Manik Dey told IANS.

Dey, who is the chairman of the NERPC, said that the region can produce more than 60,000 MW of power if the resources available in the region can be utilised properly.

"The region has also being facing numerous problems on power transmission among the seven states," he added.

Power ministers of the seven northeastern region and representatives of power sector PSUs under the central government are the members of the NERPC.

According to an official document of state-owned North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO), the hydro-power potential alone of the northeastern region is estimated at about 58,971 MW, but only less than two percent (1,200 MW) has so far been harnessed till early this year.

The thermal and other natural resource based power projects can generate several thousand MW more electricity in the power and industry starved region.

According to the NEEPCO document, 19 power projects, including twelve 3,918 MW capacity hydel power projects and four thermal power projects with installed capacity of 5,595 MW, are now in various stages of commissioning and planning in the northeastern region by different organisations, including NEEPCO.

The power plants either being set up or would be set up are in Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Mizoram and Tripura.

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