Board to go ahead with coal-fired power plant

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd will go ahead with its plan to set up a coal-fired power plant in the east coast, despite requests that it adopt green energy.

In a statement, SESB said the 300MW coal-fired plant remained the best option to meet the demand for electricity in the east coast of Sabah, where power is supplied through a grid originating in the west coast of the state.

The statement comes in the wake of Kalabakan MP Datuk Abdul Ghapur Salleh’s call for SESB to abandon plans for a coal-fired power plant and take advantage of the large availability of oil palm biomass to meet the power needs of the east coast.

A coalition of NGOs have also worked out a road map for the immediate use of biomass as an alternative power source while the state government awaited the EIA report on the proposed plant.

In the statement, SESB said the coal plant, to be located in Lahad Datu, would lessen the reliance on power supply from the west coast of the state.

SESB also dismissed claims by Ghapur that the people of Tawau continued to face power disruptions of up to 15 times a day.

SESB said that it never had any load shedding of up to 15 times, and had reduced power shedding since September last year.

With improvements in power generation and distribution, cases of high voltage damage were reduced from 75 to 49 while low voltage damage had been cut from 180 cases to 99, the statement added.

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