North Chennai Thermal Power Station

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North Chennai Thermal Power Station
North Chennai thermal power station.jpg
North Chennai Thermal Power Station
Location of the North Chennai Thermal Power Station n Tamil Nadu
LocationAthipattu Pudunagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Coordinates13°14′51″N 80°19′36″E / 13.24750°N 80.32667°E / 13.24750; 80.32667Coordinates: 13°14′51″N 80°19′36″E / 13.24750°N 80.32667°E / 13.24750; 80.32667
Commission dateUnit 1: 25 October 1994
Unit 2: 27 March 1995
Unit 3: 24 February 1996
Unit 4: 3 March 2014
Unit 5: 8 May 2014
Thermal power station
Primary fuelBituminous coal
Power generation
Units operational3 x 210 MW; 2 x 600 MW
Nameplate capacity1,830 MW

The North Chennai Thermal Power Station is a power station situated about 25 kilometres (16 mi) from Chennai city.[1] It is one of the major power plants of Tamil Nadu and has a total installed capacity of 1,830 MW (2,450,000 hp).[2][3][4]


The North Chennai Thermal Power Station was commissioned in 1994 in the Thiruvallur district. It was built there due to its proximity to the Ennore Port, which also supplies Ennore Thermal Power Station. It has won various awards for productivity and reduction in auxiliary consumption.[2][5] The coal necessary for the power station arrives from the Ennore Port.[6] Recently a stator was brought to the station via the sea.[7] In recent years due to shortage of coal in the state, coal is being imported to function the power plant.[8]


Stage Unit Number Installed Capacity (MW) Date of Commissioning Status
1st 1 210 1994 October Running
1st 2 210 1995 March Running
1st 3 210 1996 February Running
2nd 4 600 2014 March Running
2nd 5 600 2014 May Running

Pollution and Threats[edit]

A 2014 study of coal plants in Southeast India documented extensive environmental impacts from the North Chennai Thermal Power Station, including dumping of large quantities of coal combustion waste into the Buckingham Canal and in nearby marshlands, leaking ash ponds, and discharge of hot water into Ennore Creek. The impacts have been especially felt by local fishing communities, which have protested the expansion of the plant. Additional impacts have been caused by dredging associated with Ennore Port, which supplies coal to the plant. Environmental activists are demanding that construction on the third phase of the North Chennai Thermal Power Station in Ennore be halted since there is a wide variety of wildlife within the area of the plant that is at risk from continued construction. It is planned for 2019 - 2020

The North Chennai Thermal Power Station is polluting the area in Athipattu Pudunagar, Ennore and thus has taken away the livelihood of many residents. Air pollution is one part of it, as toxic gases get free when coal is burned and the dust of the coal that is stored around the plants accesses the lungs while breathing. Data of the Central Pollution Control Board proves that the air in Ennore is unhealthy to breathe.[9] A huge threat to the environment in Athipattu Pudunagar and Ennore is the illegal dumping of fly ash by the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO), which is running the North Chennai Thermal Power Plant. Fly ash from the ash pond of the plant in leaking into the Ennore creek.[10] The Ennore creek that plays a vital role in balancing the coastal ecosystem in the area. Fly ash is a by-product when coal gets burned and is toxic; it contains heavy metals such as arsenic, boron, cadmium, chromium, mercury and selenium.[11] Heavy metals such as selenium bioaccumulate in fish and harm their ability to reproduce. This affects fish resources and in turn, livelihood of fishermen. In some areas the dumped ash has reduced the depth of the creek from 14 feet below sea level to 2 to 4 feet. This reduces the creek´s ability to carry water, which is crucial, especially in times of flooding and in some areas makes it nearly impossible for fishermen to use their boats on the water. In an recent order the southern bench of the National Green Tribunal forces TANGEDCO to remove the illegally dumped fly ash from the Ennore Creek. If TANGEDCO fails to do this within one week the two units from it will be shut down at the next hearing. Additionally, TANGEDCO has to repair leaking pipes and come up with a plan how to replace the old ones.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "North Chennai thermal power station". wikimapia. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  2. ^ a b "North Chennai Thermal Power Station" (PDF). Retrieved 22 May 2018.
  3. ^ "power generation at ncpcl" (PDF). Retrieved 7 September 2012.
  4. ^ "list of thermal power plants in tamil nadu". globalshiksha. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  5. ^ T.Ramakrishnan (20 April 2012). "Thermal stations perform well, yet energy deficit mounts". The Hindu. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  6. ^ "Arrangement of coal to meet the requirement of thermal power stations of tangedco" (PDF). Retrieved 7 September 2012.
  7. ^ "The long journey of a generator stator". The Hindu. 15 May 2012. Retrieved 7 September 2012.
  8. ^ Srikanth, R (14 November 2011). "State may have to rely on imported coal for new thermal projects". The Hindu. Retrieved 7 September 2012.
  9. ^ "CPCB: Continuous Ambient Air quality". Central Pollution Control Board. Retrieved 6 July 2017.
  10. ^ "Death by a Thousand Cuts: Report of Public Hearing Held On Loss of Ecology and Fisher Livelihood in Ennore Creek" (PDF). Ennore Anaithu Meenava Grama Kootamaipu. April 2017. Retrieved 6 July 2017.
  11. ^ "Ennore Creek – Ecology and Violations" (PDF). The Coastal Resource Centre. Retrieved 23 June 2017.
  12. ^ "Tangedco given a week to remove flyash from Ennore Creek". The Hindu. 12 July 2017. Retrieved 13 July 2017.

External links[edit]