Power, Energy and Mineral Resources
Uninterrupted power supply to be ensured through improvement in distribution: Nasrul
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has said that the uninterrupted power supply will continue through strengthening the distribution network. "Underground cable network with optical fiber will ensure reliable power supply through dual sources," he said while visiting the sites of six ongoing projects in Dhaka Power Distribution Company Limited (DPDC) on Thursday. He also said that installations of underground cables, substations and a central SCADA system will strengthen the power distribution network. DPDC Managing Director Engineer Bikash Dewan was present on the occasion. The DPDC has been implementing a project titled: "Extension and Strengthening of Power Distribution System under the DPDC". Read more: BERC now to consult with govt before any move on retail power tariff hike proposals The DPDC said that under the project some new 14 substations of 132/33 kV capacity and 26 substations of 33/11 kV capacity will be installed while capacity of some 8 existing substations of 132/33 kV and 4 substations of 33/11 kV will be enhanced. Considering the scarcity of land in Dhaka city, some modern and high capacity 35/50 MVA of 33/11 kV power transformers are being installed by the DPDC. This is the first time this type of power transformer is being installed in Bangladesh by DPDC. Under the project, some 20 km of existing overhead distribution lines in Dhanmondi area will be converted into underground cable networks. As a result, Dhanmondi area will be free form overhead cables and the power distribution will be uninterrupted. Under the DPDC project, overhead transmission lines and towers in Hatirjheel area will be removed and underground cables will be installed, which will greatly enhance the aesthetic beauty of the area. Read more: Saudi firm, BPDB sign deal to set up 1000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh Besides, a state-of-the-art mechanised wire house is being constructed at Tongi with an open hangar attached. This will be the first such wire house in the power sector in Bangladesh.
Beacon of hope: Zakiganj announced Bangladesh’s 28th gas field
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid on Monday formally announced Zakiganj as the country 28th gas field having 68 billion cubic feet of gas reserve. The state-owned Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration and Production Company (Bapex) made the discovery in June last, but refrained from making any formal announcement as it was assessing the prospects of viable recovery in recovering gas from the drilled well at Ananadapur village in Zakiganj upazila, Sylhet. Read: BAPEX cautiously optimistic as it tests new well at Zakiganj The formal announcement on the new gas discovery came at a webinar, organized by Energy and Mineral Resources Division to observe August 9 as National Energy Security Day marking the historic decision of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman to take over 5 gas fields in Sylhet region from multinational Shell Oil Company in 1975. The state minister said the new gas field has a possible reserve of 68 billion cubic feet of gas to be extractable in next 12-13 years at 10 million cubic feet per day (MMCFD). “The value of the entire reserve at the new gas field would be Tk 1,276 crore,” he added, saying that a 3D survey will be conducted to find the accurate position of the fossil fuel in the virgin field. So far, 27 gas fields have been discovered in the country. The proven reserves in these gas fields are 21.4 TCF, with six more TCF potential reserves. Of this, about 18 TCF has been taken. There are only three TCFs left as proven stocks, and potential reserves are likely to be seven more TSFs. Read: BAPEX discovers 4-layer gas in new part of Haripur
Nasrul upset over Siemens India’s delay in building power sub-stations
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has blasted Siemens India for the company’s 30-month delay in completing work on 24 power substations in the capital city. Nasrul’s outburst came during inauguration of the newly constructed substations, each having 33-11 kV capacity, of Dhaka Electric Supply Company (Desco) on Thursday. Read: Desco’s underground cabling plan misses JICA deadline for its own fault “Please, reconsider awarding contracts to those bidders who delay or fail to complete the jobs as per schedule”, he told power sector officials in a virtually delivered speech. The function, with Desco chairman and additional secretary of the Power Division Sheikh Faizul Amin in the chair, was also addressed by Power Secretary Habibur Rahman and Desco Managing Director Kausar Ameer Ali. The Desco Chief noted that the Siemens India, the contractor of the project, started work in 2017, but it took an additional 30 months to complete it. Nasrul instructed the top officials of Desco, the project implementing agency, to impose liquidated damage (LD) as penalty for this delay in completing the jobs. Read:Desco to get smart with pre-paid meters “Many of the industries have been deprived of electricity supply due to the delay in completing the job...For this they have to incur a huge financial loss”, he told the officials saying, ``You must take action against Siamese India. He also alleged that the same contractor has installed a power substation at his constituency in Keraniganj which is substandard and fails to function properly. “You must take into consideration in future about such failed companies while awarding any contract”, said the annoyed-looking state minister. He also advised Desco to take immediate measures for upgrading the newly installed substations or else these will lose their capacity by 2025. Read:Desco to provide smart prepaid meters to all customers by 2023 “If you don’t initiate an up-gradation project, these substations will not work after 2025”, he said, adding that Desco has to take steps immediately as the tendering process takes huge amount of time. Desco Managing Director informed that it spent Tk 3,75.51 crore to build the new substations at 24 locations across the city which will serve 450,000 consumers to receive quality electricity and help reduce system loss by 1.21 per cent from existing 8.5 per cent to 7.29 per cent.
Nasrul attributes Niko case win to coordinated efforts
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid attributed the government’s win in the case against the Canadian gas company Niko Resources for Tangratila Gas field blowout to coordinated efforts of all. “The coordinated efforts made in a professional manner has given us the success against Niko”, he said while addressing a virtual seminar on “Niko Arbitration 2020: Political & Judicial Antecedents and Aftermath” organised by Ducsu Law and Political Review on Saturday night from his home. Barrister Moin Gani, Petrobangla’s lawyer in Niko Case, Dr Rumana Islam, a professor at Law Department of Dhaka University, Shahriar Tianjin and Chief Editor of Ducsu Law and Political Review Md Azharuddin Bhuiya attended the videoconference. Blaming the BNP-Jamaal-led government’s wrong decision to award the gas field to Niko, Nasrul Hamid said the Tangratila gas field incurred a huge financial loss due to their wrong decision. “If we had got 500 mmcd gas from Chhatak Tangratila Gas field, it would have played an enormous role in our economy,” he said. Bangladesh has won the case filed with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) against Canadian company Niko Resources for the blowout in Tangratila Gas field at Chhatak, Sylhet on January 7, 2005. The ICSID delivered its verdict recently holding Niko responsible for the blowout against which Bangladesh submitted a claim for a total loss of over US$ 1 billion as part of the government’s loss and also of Bapex, a Petrobangla subsidiary. But it is not clear whether Bangladesh could realise the full compensation from Niko as the company has already been declared bankrupt by the Canadian government.