NEPC’s resolution to proceed with Krabi Power Plant development project

          The National Energy Policy Council (NEPC)’s resolution is to carry on Krabi Power Plant project under PDP 2015 and supports electricity generation from renewable power through civil state power plant project to serve the rising demand in the Southern Thailand.

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          On February 17, 2017 at the Government’s House, NEPC’s meeting chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, considered the power development in the southern provinces for its power supply security. The current generating capacity in the southern provinces is 3,089.5 MW, while the peak demand of EGAT’s power system is 2,713 MW. If there is a crisis and urgent situation contributing to the shutdown of the main power plants in the area, the reserved power in the region will not be enough. To strengthen the power system security in the South of Thailand with the rising demand, PDP 2015 is comprised of the 800 MW Krabi coal-fired power plant with scheduled commercial operation date in 2019 and 2,000 MW Thepa coal-fired power plant with scheduled commercial operation date in 2021.

          As some people were still against the projects and EGAT could not construct the power plant in the area as planned, the Tri-partite Committee was established to study and find out how to make the project development comply with the public need. It is suggested that representatives from the public be members of the committee to oversee the power plant operation, while the power development fund should cover more than 5 kilometers radius of the power plant by adding areas affected by the coal transportation. Moreover, EGAT is suggested to support the power generation from renewable energy in the southern areas and strictly comply with the law in implementing the power development project.

          The Prime Minister also told EGAT to further encourage public participation and communicate to the public for better understanding before the construction begins. As EGAT has already implemented the Tri-partite Committee’s decision and the Prime Minister’s order, NEPC approved the Krabi power plant development project to move on to strengthen the power system in the southern provinces according to PDP 2015.

          NEPC also approved the civil state power plant project for the three southern provinces by purchasing the power from biomass with the capacity not more than 12 MW and biogas (energy crop) not more than 30 MW. The Ministry of Energy and Energy Regulatory Commission will submit power purchase rate for Energy Policy Executive Committee to consider based on fairness. EGAT is also told to manage the cost of electricity generation in order that purchasing the power from civil state power plant project will have the least impact on the power users. The civil state power plant project complies with the Government’s policy to solve the problem in the southern provinces by encouraging job employment, raising income, and encouraging self-defense of people in the area and decentralized power generation system, which will contribute to the sustainability of power generation from the local fuels.