No viable solution to energy crisis in 20-30 years
The world is unlikely to find viable solution for the energy crisis
in the next 20-30 years, Sustainable Energy Authority (SEA) Chairman,
Ananda S. Gunasekera said.
"During this transition period from the depletion of the fossil fuel
until the discovery of such viable renewable energy source the people
have to undergo difficulties," he said.
The Chairman was addressing Education Department Zonal and Divisional
Directors to educate them on a new project introducing energy
conservation in the school curriculum. He regarded it as a landmark
"Energy conservation is of utmost importance since we really waste a
huge amount of power simply because of ignorance and negligence." He
said through schoolchildren, the message of conservation would easily
reach the domestic consumers. The chairman regarded the present crisis
as a global phenomena and the poor countries being the worst hit.
"Currently a barrel of crude oil has hit a record price of US $ 84 in
the international market.
We have only two options i.e. to promote sustainable, indigenous
energy sources and conserve energy," he said.
Power and Energy Minister W.D.J. Senevirathne noted that two
ministries got together to implement the programme and through the
schools the message of conservation to domestic consumers of electricity
who consume one third of the power in country.
The Minister quoting Lenin said power and energy was indispensable to
achieve socialism and realisation of full life. He noted that it has
become a human right like water and air.
The Minister pointed out that the country's hydro power had been
fully utilised except for few medium and some small scale projects and
the last major project being the Upper Kotmale which would be completed
After the power crisis in 1990s, there was a heavy shift for diesel
powered power generation. When the Government could not build diesel
power plants the private sector was encouraged to do so and that worsend
the crisis for the CEB, he said.
"The Government has now adapted the coal fired power generation
development as a policy to produce cheaper power."
The Minister expressed confidence that a unit of electricity could be
produced at Rs. 5.50 once coal power plants are implemented.
Education Minister Susil Premjayantha hailing the project as timely,
said the project could have been started in 1982 in the aftermath of the
then power crisis.
He pointed out that the petroleum fired power generation accounted
for one third of the annual diesel consumption of the country which is
unbearable in terms of the national income. He said the country's
production could not be increased in par with the oil price increase.
The Minister stressed the necessity to manage the energy consumption
and conserve energy.
"The students, the future generation should be educated to conserve
energy, why we should use CFL bulbs and need to do all the ironing once
or twice a week."
The Minister appealed to the Zonal and Divisional Directors of the
Ministry to take all possible steps to fully implement the project in
In terms of the Millennium Curricular Restructuring and to assess the
students, from 2007, grade 10 students will have nine Extended Learning
They would be prescribed for the science subject projects for Grade
10 students in Government schools to extended and facilitate the
Third instrument of the third term will be on the energy
conservation, a step in the long term measure to cut down the annual
domestic energy wastage of 230 GWh.
The Project required the active participation of the students to
conserve energy and in turn foreign exchange.
It further aims to conserve other types of energy sources such as LP
gas, Kerosene and firewood (biomass).
Under the project, a hand book will be distributed freely among year
10 students numbering around three lakhs.
The hand book was compiled and published by SEA of Sri Lanka with the
assistance of the Health and Physical Education Department of the
National Department of Education (NIE).
NIE Director General Professor J.W. Wickremasinghe, Dr. Thilak
Siyambalapitiya, directors of NIE, Zonal and Divisional Directors of
Education and officials of the SEA also participated.