Odisha's protest over AP's pumped storage project
The Odisha government should move contempt proceedings against Andhra government for violating Supreme Court’s 1968 order, says activist
Visakhapatnam: 'Amo Kotia', an organisation led by former District Collector of Odisha's Koraput Gadadhar Parida, on Thursday, appealed to the Odisha government to move contempt proceedings against Andhra Pradesh government for violating Supreme Court's 1968 order, to maintain status quo pertaining claims over border areas.
Parida told Bizz Buzz that as per the recommendation of Tata Consulting Engineers Ltd (TCE), which was engaged by Non-conventional Energy Development Corporation of AP (NREDCAP) to conduct the feasibility studies, the project being taken up by AP government following a MoU (memorandum of understanding) with the Adani Group, is leading to tension in the areas bordering Odisha-AP.
In its report submitted in 2021, TCE recommended the development of Kurukutti and Karrivalasa pumped storage project (PSP) as a single cluster by adopting a common lower reservoir. Accordingly, studies were carried out and an installed capacity of about 1200 MW was adopted for Kurukutti PSP. The feasibility and necessity of detailed studies required for further evaluation of Kurukutti PSP were reviewed considering various parameters/factors.
"As Kurukutti comes under Odisha jurisdiction, the dam will be built in our State and the areas under submergence will also belong to Odisha, AP's plan to go ahead with the project in Odisha by entering into an agreement with Adani Group should not be allowed," he said. If required, Parida suggested Odisha to take up the project on its own.
The cost of the project was estimated at Rs 4,766 crore at 2020-21 price level including IDC of Rs 538 crore. The scheme is conceived as an energy storage system (i.e., pumped storage hydroelectric project) for the large-scale solar parks currently under implementation in Andhra
Pradesh. Hence, it is not envisaged to operate the proposed scheme as run-of-the-river hydel scheme.
Kurukutti Pumped Storage Project is proposed to be located across Boduru Gedda river originating at an elevation of about RL 1400 m near Serubandha Parbat located in Odisha, according to the feasibility report.
The report stated that the river flows for a distance of about 8 km within Odisha and enters AP, near Chemidipatipolam village. It further flows for a distance of about 14 km and joins the Pedda Gedda river, (near Mokhasadandigam village) and is known as Suvarnamukhi river thereafter, the report pointed out.
With the recent thrust on development of large-scale renewable (solar and wind) projects in AP, the government led by Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy is keen on development of pumped-storage hydroelectric projects to balance variable renewable power and export surplus power to other States.
AP government claims both Kurukutti and Karrivalasa sites are located in Vizianagaram district. AP has proposed to utilise the head available between the upper dam across a minor nallah (small stream) draining into Boduru Gedda river and lower dam proposed across Boduru Gedda river, a tributary of Suvarnamukhi river (Nagavali river basin). The upper dam is located near Chemidipatipolam village in Salur taluk of Vizianagaram, according to NREDCAP officials.
In the past, Australian Renewable Energy Mapping Infrastructure (AREMI) had carried out preliminary studies and identified the Kurukutti PSP with a recommended energy storage potential of about 150 GWh and 18 hours storage. The proposed scheme envisaged construction of two new dams/reservoirs located in Boduru Gedda river in Suvarnamukhi river basin.
Kurukutti comes under Odisha jurisdiction, the dam will be built in our State and the areas under submergence also belong to Odisha. AP's plan to go ahead with the project in Odisha, by entering into an agreement with Adani Group, should not be allowed
- Gadadhar Parida