Energy units to be set up in DDCs

Kathmandu, July 29:

The government has decided to establish energy units in all 75 District Development Committees to adopt a decentralised approach in promoting alternative energy in rural parts of the country.

The decision regarding the formation of District Energy and Environment Unit (DEEU) in DDCs was taken a few months back.

The Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC) is in the process of signing Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) with the DDCs to set up the energy units. The AEPC will enhance the capacity of local bodies so that they could take leadership in planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of rural energy projects. The first phase of DEEU began on July 16 and it will last for three years.

Speaking at a workshop on ‘Mainstreaming Alternative/Rural Energy through Decentralised Approach, officiating secretary at the Ministry of Local Development Ganga Datta Awasthi today said the decentralisation of alternative energy related programmes was the best way to address the energy need of the people.

“Alternative energy can be the best option to meet the need of people who are fed up with heightening fuel crisis. But the programmes need to be taken to the grassroots levels,” he added.

He also said the DEEUs would help penetrate all the areas and meet the place specific alternative energy needs of the country. Citing the success of biogas projects in rural areas, Awasthi hoped that the local bodies would play a proactive role in promoting the alternative energy in rural areas.

The DEEU will assist the DDCs in planning rural energy projects, conducting promotional activities and preparing district energy situation report. It will also provide technical support to the DDCs on rural energy technologies related issues.

Dr Govind Raj Pokharel, executive director of AEPC, said they would provide extra technical and administrative staffers to local bodies to execute the programmes of the DEEU.

“Decentralised approach is the need of the time and it will help run programmes in a scientific way,” he added.