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Coal-fired plant nearer approval – but no deal yet on fuel source

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:
Preah Sihanouk’s Deputy Provincial Governor Chhin Seng Ngoun led the meeting on the 700mW coal-fired power plant. Supplied

Work on another coal-fired power plant project in Preah Sihanouk province has begun and is expected to be completed by 2022. However, no deal has yet been made on where the actual coal will come from.

Kheang Phearum, Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesman, said SBK Research and Development has fully completed a study on the impact of the 700 megawatt (mW) plant. He said that an environmental impact assessment has been done at the provincial level.

“Although it is at the primary stage, we consider it to be a fully study impact report because there were relevant stakeholders involved,” Phearum said. “The provincial authorities will send the report to the national level or inter-ministry to evaluate the report before gaining approval,” he said.

During the meeting, the representative of SBK gave a presentation on the completed study report on environmental impact assessment (EIA) to the Deputy Provincial Governor Chhin Seng Ngoun that the company has completed the study and shown the working standard principles on the project’s infrastructure, the impact and some solutions regarding safety.

The latter includes the belt drive, the coal warehouse area, coal ash, the laboratory, staff in different areas, the switchyard, hygiene, and other parts.

Chhin Seng Ngoun, deputy provincial governor. Supplied

Seng Ngoun said the 2x350MW coal-fired power plant is being paid for by Huadian Sihanoukville Power Generation Co Ltd.

He said the project will provide more jobs for local people and reduce imported electricity from neighbouring countries and cut costs for people. It’s expected to finish by 2022.

Seng Ngoun welcomed the company presentation on the EIA and social impact on the construction plant. He said that the province will join and provide support to the company to build the plant.

He is guiding the company to build a bridge to transport the coal to supply the factory, prepare the warehouse to store the coal and make sure it does not affect the environment – and that the company must abide by the law and regulations and people’s wellbeing who live near the factory.

Sihanoukville Provincial Department of Mines and Energy Director Prak Samprathna said the company plans to complete the project by 2022 and send energy to the grid by 2023.

Samprathana said that he did not know where the company will source the coal to generate power in Preah Sihanouk province, but he added that when the company completes the plant, they may able to sign acontract with Malaysia, Indonesia or another country to source the fuel, but so far there’s not enough information.

“So far, the company has completed the environmental impact assessment, and the construction is beginning as the company has started to clear and fill the land,” Samprathana said. “So far, there are two coal-fired power plants–CELI+II and CIIDG I+II in the province,” he said.

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