• Turkey to close five thermal plants not meeting environmental standards, while India extends deadlines

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      Patrick Lavery

      Combustion Industry News Editor

The Turkish government has decided to close five thermal power plants because of insufficient environmental performance. Two plants in Kutahya, and one in each of Kahramanmaras, Sivas and Zonguldak are to be closed, as they did not retrofit to achieve standards, but eight other plants also given deadlines of the end of 2019 did achieve (or demonstrate sufficient progress towards achieving) them. Turkey has a fleet for 52 coal-fired plants subject to emissions standards, and so to close five is a significant portion, though the likelihood is that they were older and less efficient plants.

The Indian government, however, has been more lenient, with a number of coal-fired power plants allowed to keep operating despite governmental threats to close them down if sulphur dioxide controlling equipment was not installed. In fact, only one in 11 plants installed SOx-abating equipment by the end of 2019, which was already an extension of a 2017 deadline. This is probably reflection of having little spare reserve capacity, but with air quality in New Delhi some of the world’s worst, it must be a tough decision for the government – less electricity, or continued contributions to terrible pollution.