NEA to build 10 new hydropower projects
Kathmandu, August 25
With the aim to increase the quantum of electricity generated by its subsidiary companies, Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA) is planning to build 10 reservoirs and run-of-the-river (ROR) projects from this fiscal year.
As per NEA, it has initiated the process to build four reservoir projects with the total installed capacity of 1,969 megawatts and other six peaking run-of-the-river (PROR) and ROR projects with the total installed capacity of 138 megawatts from ongoing fiscal year.
“We are considering these projects as ‘game changers’ in terms of power balance and maintaining the load,” said Kul Man Ghising, managing director of NEA, adding that the authority had earlier been criticised for only building ROR and PROR projects.
He further said that in the lack of reservoir projects like Kulekhani, the country is currently compelled to import electricity during the dry season when the water levels in the rivers recede. “Hence, we have to develop some projects to address this situation.”
As per plan, the 140 MW Tahahu Hydropower is ready for construction. The project development company is also building 104 MW Lower Seti Hydropower Project, for which it is conducting detailed engineering design.
Moreover, the detailed engineering works and environmental impact assessment of 1,060 MW Upper Arun Hydropower Project is ongoing and the consultant firm is preparing the tender documents for construction of the mega project. As per the earlier agreement, World Bank has committed to invest in the project. Other donor agencies have also expressed interest to invest in the project.
Earlier, the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation had said completion of Upper Arun would be a game changer for the country’s energy sector.
Similarly, detailed engineering design of 635 MW Dudhkoshi Reservoir Project is being conducted and the consultant firm is preparing the tender document for its construction.
The power utility is planning to start the construction of 30 MW Ekhuwa Khola, while 37 MW Upper Trishuli III B is under construction phase. Meanwhile, construction of 40 MW Raghuganga Hydropower has already started.
NEA has initiated the process to build 42 MW Modi Hydro and 19 MW Modi ‘A’ Hydro with investment of NEA staffers. At present, nearly 10,000 workers are working at NEA.
As per NEA, it is preparing to take forward all the aforementioned projects via company model, for which chances of timely completion is high.