By Malum Nalu
PETROLEUM and Energy Minister Ben Micah says the US$2 billion (K6b) ethane-power transmitting plant in Madang will mean cheaper and accessible electricity for the country by 2019.
He told The National yesterday that it had been something he had been working on since 2012 when he was minister for State-owned enterprises.
He said national executive council had already looked at the proposal from the American Ethane Company and had referred it back to the Central Agencies Coordinating Committee.
Micah he wanted to develop an energy policy and plan which would bring power to 100 per cent of the population within 20 years.
“That is why I was able to develop the energy policy with the contribution of the Department of Public Enterprise and State Investments, Department of Petroleum and Energy, and key stakeholders in both renewable and non-renewable energy,” he said.
Micah said various sources of energy looked at included oil, gas, coal, hydro, geo-thermal, wind and solar.
“All our major hydro projects which will enable cheaper, renewable sources are still a long way down the line,” he said.
“Geo-thermal is the same. Solar and wind cannot develop high capacity that can meet the requirements of developing industries, as well as several large mines that are in the pipeline to be developed within the next 10 to 15 years. Therefore, we had to look for other alternatives, others sources which are cleaner and cheape and can be available in the long-term in large quantities.”
By Malum Nalu