A year late, Koh Larn undersea power cable goes live

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More than a year later than its planned completion date, work to lay and connect an undersea cable to bring electricity to Koh Larn is finally done.

The 140 million baht cable running between Pattaya Park and the island’s Tha Rai Bay was supposed to have been operational in August 2009. Late or not, Koh Larn residents plagued by decades of power outages expressed relief and pleasure.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome along with Somsak Pittayapongporn, manager of the Provincial Electricity Authority in Pattaya, and Pattaya councilors jointly flick the switch to turn on the power on Koh Larn. Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome along with Somsak Pittayapongporn, manager of the Provincial Electricity Authority in Pattaya, and Pattaya councilors jointly flick the switch to turn on the power on Koh Larn.

The Provincial Electricity Authority project was launched after Koh Larn outgrew its tiny power station, which supplied only 2 mw of electricity to the island and ran up losses of 2 million baht. The new cable will bring 10 mw of power, covering the entire island and accommodating about 80% of its projected growth. The price of electricity for end users will remain the same.

Mayor Itthiphol Kunplome said delays in the project were caused by opposition to installation of high-voltage towers in front of Pattaya Park in Jomtien Beach. The tower plan was eventually jettisoned in favor an underground solution.

Itthiphol said the system will supply enough electricity for 10 years. And during the next decade the PEA will work on a more-robust system.

Koh Larn currently hosts about 900 homes and as many as 4,000 residents.