Electricity generated by the cheap and non-pollutive renewable energy led Sri Lanka’s electricity sector for five consecutive days to Thursday (14) after a lapse of 36 days, Ceylon Electricity Board’s (CEB’s) Friday’s (15) data showed.
Prior to the current dispensation, the last time renewables led the way by providing over 50 per cent of Sri Lanka’s electricity needs for five consecutive days or more was for 30 consecutive days from 10 May 2022 to 8 June 2022.
Of the total electricity supplied by the CEB to consumers in Sri Lanka in the five consecutive days to Thursday, renewable energy share was 50.1, 52.55, 52.36, 56.71 and 52.15 per cent respectively, while the balance electricity supply was provided by the pollutive and imported fossil fuels.
Meanwhile, of the total amount of 39.46 giga Watt hours (gWh) of electricity consumed by the country on Thursday, renewables which was responsible for 52.15 per cent (20.58 gWh), was aided by non-renewables supplying the balance 47.85 per cent (18.88 gWh) electricity consumed.
Thursday’s non-renewables breakdown comprised CEB coal (12.94 gWh), CEB diesel (3.84 gWh) and private sector diesel (2.1 gWh) respectively. And Thursday’s renewable energy breakdown comprised CEB hydro 13.69 gWh, equivalent to 66.52 per cent of total renewable energy generated on that day, followed by private sector wind (2.33 gWh), CEB wind (2.20 gWh), private mini-hydro (1.80 gWh), private solar (0.31 gWh) and private biomass (0.25 gWh) respectively
According to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka’s 2021 Annual Report, the cheapest source of electricity generation to the CEB last year was hydro, costing a mere Rs 1.67 a unit or one kilo Watt hour (kWh) of electricity followed by coal (Rs 10.87); non-conventional renewables such as mini-hydro, wind-both CEB and private sector biomass and solar (Rs 18.99), CEB diesel (Rs 29.01) and private diesel (Rs 30.35), respectively.
CEB’s hydro breakdown of Thursday comprised Mahaweli (6.73 gWh), Laxapana (5.42 gWh) and Samanalawewa (ie both Samanalawewa and Kukule Ganga hydroelectric power project (HEPP) together): 1.55 gWh respectively.
By Paneetha Ameresekere