Lamjung hydro projects in limbo

Lamjung, February 18

A dozen under-construction hydro projects seem to be in crisis in Lamjung after failure to construct new transmission lines. The setback has discouraged investors and potential investors of hydro power projects.

In order to get the transmission line, some hydro projects have delayed the Power Purchase Agreement with Nepal Electricity Authority, while some have not been able to initiate construction work.

Lamjung has the capacity to generate 2,500 megawatts. However, due to lack of transmission line, it has not been able to generate power to other districts. Mid-Marsyangdi Hydro Project (70 megawatt), Upper Marsyangdi (50 megawatt), Siuri Hydro Project (5 megawatt), Radhi Hydro (4.4MW), Midimkhola Karapu Hydro(3MW) and Chhyangdi (2MW), among other small hydro projects, are generating power. Eight hydro projects are under construction in the district.

Promoters of hydro projects expressed the need to construct transmission lines at three places in the district. They have demanded construction of Khudi-Udayapur, Markinchowk-Bharatpur 220 KV Double Circuit, Kirtipur-Udipur 132 KV Double Circuit and Bhorletar-Damauli 132 KV Double Circuit transmission lines.

Keshav Bahadur Rayamajhi, Managing Director at Super Dordi Project said that despite agreement on more than 200 megawatts, they could not speed up their projects due to lack of transmission line. “We cannot invest openly due to lack of transmission line and the private sector is worried about it. “They are in a wait-and-watch mood,” Rayamajhi said.

Lamjung Model Hydro Investment Company Private Limited Chair Bhesh Bahadur Paudel said that if transmission line was constructed, the district would generate sufficient power for the entire country in five years.

Hydro Project Director Arjun Thapa said that the government had failed to build the transmission line which was a major problem.

Lamjung District Coordination Committee Chief Lokraj Pandey said that construction of various hydro power projects could make the district prosperous and pledged to lend support from his side.