Kamalanga power station

From Global Energy Monitor

Phase I of the Kamalanga power station is a 1050-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power station in Odisha, India. Another 350 MW (Phase II) has been permitted.

Location

The plant is located in Kamalanga in Odisha’s Dhenkanal district.

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Background

Kamalanga power station is proposed by a GMR Energy subsidiary, GMR Kamalanga Energy Ltd. It would consist of four 350 MW units built in two phases: 3x350 MW and 1x350 MW, respectively, for a total of 1400MW. GKEL would supply power to Odisha, Bihar, Haryana and other parts of the country.[1][2]

Phase 1: 1050 MW

The first two units (350 MW each) were commissioned in 2013.[3]

The third unit (350 MW) went into operation on March 25, 2014.[4]

Phase II: 350 MW addition

On December 5, 2011, the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) approved the fourth 350 MW unit at the same location. GMR Energy said no additional land will be required for the expansion. The company will use imported coal until indigenous coal linkage is obtained. Coal will be imported from Indonesia. A public hearing was held on March 30, 2011.[5]

As of February 2015, phase II has not entered construction and does not have a planned commissioning date.[6]

On April 11, 2019, the environmental clearance for phase II was extended. The unit is planned for commissioning in 2023.[7]

Financing for Phase I and II

In May 2009, a financing agreement for phase I and II was closed. US$721.73 million in loans was provided by State Bank of India, Punjab & Sind Bank, Corporation Bank, Andhra Bank, United Bank of India, Uco Bank, Indian Bank, Infrastructure Development Finance Company, Central Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, IDBI Bank, and State Bank of India. US$240.57 million in equity was provided by GMR Group and Infrastructure Development Finance Company.[8]

In June 2015, a refinancing agreement for phase I was closed. US$518.21 million in loans was provided by State Bank of India, Indian Bank, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, State Bank of Mysore, Central Bank of India, Corporation Bank, IDBI Bank, United Bank of India, Punjab & Sind Bank, and Uco Bank. SBI Capital Markets acted as financing adviser to the sponsors.[9]

Sell-off abandoned

In August 2020, the Indian power utility JSW Energy announced that it had called off its deal to acquire the 1,050 MW Kamalanga power station project in Odisha after entering into exclusive talks with GMR Energy to buy it in October 2019, and then signing a purchase agreement in February 2020. The company is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2050 and will instead focus on renewable energy. Speaking to India's Economic Times, JSW's CEO Prashant Jain explained why the company was abandoning its plan to expand its thermal power capacity through acquisitions: "“We have realised that many of these existing thermal assets have ongoing litigations and the government is increasing taxes on polluting industries, so it will be a continuous struggle for the next 15-20 years for the balance life of the plant. Given all this, renewables is a better option.”[10]

Opposition

According to Bank Information Center, members of MASS filed a complaint formally challenging IFC’s funding for the GMR Kamalanga Energy Limited. According to the BIC:[11]

After months of independent research and connecting the dots, complainants discovered a can of worms that IFC and its client are hiding.
One, IFC does not want the public to know that its FI investment is located in a Revenue Block that the Ministry of the Environment classifies as 7th of the 88 most polluted hot spots in the country. The project site is highly uninhabitable as industrial wastes that run into the water streams contain highly deadly fluorine. In 2010, the Environmental Ministry issued a moratorium for constructing new projects in the area.
Had this been a direct IFC investment, safeguards check and risk mitigation such as environmental impact assessment, pollution abatement and community health and safety should have applied. But by concealing the basic information from the public, IFC is seen to be perpetuating the disasters now engulfing the agricultural and water resources of tribal, dalit and poor farming communities.
Amulya Nayak, Convenor of the Odisha Chas Parivesh Surekhsa Parishad (Parishad) and complainant to CAO revealed: “The company never shows any regard for community health. It ignores villagers’ requests to not dump its garbage to adjacent agricultural lands. GKEL employs dynamite blasting at the project site, which causes cracks in nearby houses and primary school building. Project also extracts huge water volume and we witness in our bore wells the depleting water level, which is the main source of drinking, cooking and washing for thousands of families.”
Two, the IFC holds back facts about the economic displacement resulting from this FI loan. Although public hearing is legally mandated for any kind of land acquisition process in India, the company did not comply with it prior to constructing the plant. GKEL acquired 1200 acres of mostly prime agricultural land irrigated by the Rengali Canal System.
The 900 acres private land acquired used to feed and employ nearly 1,300 families in 4 villages. With no livelihood restoration plan in place and with many affected families getting no proper land compensation until today, hundreds have lost their land, crops, trees and other properties. Those economically displaced include the agricultural laborers and share croppers, the Khaira tribe and the dalit.
Three, the company, in collusion with the administration, uses force and other tactics to intimidate people. Women and men are randomly arrested and implicated in false cases. Some were beaten, tortured and intimidated by the police before their release. A climate of fear now engulfs the community as police continues with its random arrest, threats and high-handedness.
Asks Bhakta Bandhu Behera, a project affected person from Manibeda village and member of Parishad asks, “are these the types of information the IFC does not want to share with us and the greater public because it will jeopardize the interest of its client? Will the World Bank Group remain mum to safeguard its borrower? What about the real dangers we now face?”

Project Details

Sponsor: GMR Energy
Location: Kamalanga village, Odapada taluk, Dhenkanal district, Odisha
Coordinates: 20.8705765, 85.2669793 (exact)
Status:

  • Phase I, Unit 1 - Operating (commissioned March 28, 2013)
  • Phase I, Unit 2 - Operating (commissioned September 28, 2013)
  • Phase I, Unit 3 - Operating (commissioned March 25, 2014)
  • Phase II - Permitted

Capacity:

  • Phase I: 1050 MW (3 x 350MW)
  • Phase II: 350 MW

Type:
Projected in service: 2023 (Phase II)
Coal Type:
Coal Source: Rampia coal blocks, Ib Valley
Estimated annual CO2:
Source of financing: Phase I and II: US$721.73 million in debt from State Bank of India, Punjab & Sind Bank, Corporation Bank, Andhra Bank, United Bank of India, Uco Bank, Indian Bank, Infrastructure Development Finance Company, Central Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, IDBI Bank, and State Bank of India. US$240.57 million in equity from GMR Group and Infrastructure Development Finance Company[8] Refinancing for Phase I: US$518.21 million in debt from State Bank of India, Indian Bank, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, State Bank of Mysore, Central Bank of India, Corporation Bank, IDBI Bank, United Bank of India, Punjab & Sind Bank, and Uco Bank[9]
Permits and applications:

Articles and resources

References

  1. "GKEL gets mega power status" Industry Monitor, December 16, 2011.
  2. "GMR Kamalanga Energy Ltd. (GKEL)", GMR Group website, accessed November 2011.
  3. Monthly Report on Broad Status of Thermal Power Projects in the Country, Central Electricity Authority, September 2013
  4. "Third unit of GMR’s Kamalanga thermal power plant operational," The Hindu, March 25, 2014.
  5. Environmental clearance letter from MoEF to Kalamanga Energy Ltd, December 5, 2011
  6. Broad Status Report, India Central Electrical Authority, February 2015
  7. Environmental Clearance extension, India MoEF, April 11, 2019
  8. 8.0 8.1 "Preview of GMR Kamalanga Coal-fired Power Plant (1400MW) | Transaction | IJGlobal". ijglobal.com. Retrieved 2020-10-19.
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Preview of Kamalanga Power Plant Refinancing (1400MW) | Transaction | IJGlobal". ijglobal.com. Retrieved 2020-10-19.
  10. Rachita Prasad, "JSW Energy pulls the plug on thermal asset expansion, focus on green energy now", Economic Times, Aug. 3, 2020
  11. "IFC Ombudsman accepts complaint against GMR project in Odisha," Bank Information Center press release, May 13, 2011.

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