Seeking revival, Dabhol embraces a brand new plan
Spread over some 1,700 acres in the Ratnagiri district of Maharashtra, the Dabhol power project has worked only intermittently ever since its American promoter, the erstwhile Enron Corporation, left it in a jam in 2001.
It has been in the custody of state-owned NTPC and GAIL (India) since 2005 when the United Progressive Alliance government decided to take over the project after long-drawn negotiations with the lenders.
Under a 25-year power purchase agreement, Maharashtra agreed to buy 95 per cent of Dabhol’s power, Goa 1 per cent, Daman & Diu 2 per cent and Dadra Nagar Haveli another 2 per cent.
With 8.5 million standard cubic metres a day of gas from Reliance Industries’ D6 field in the Krishna-Godavari basin, Dabhol was able to generate power at about Rs 3.5 a unit. It even made profit for three years starting 2009-10.
Trouble started from April 2013 when gas production from D6 began to dip and soon there was no domestic gas available. In December 2013, the power plant shut down.