TECHNICAL ISSUES DELAY COMPLETION OF UPPER TAMAKOSHI HYDEL PROECT
Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project, one of the nation’s top priority project, has faced some hindrances just around the time of instigating the project. The deadline of the project that was due to come into operation this month has now been pushed back by a month.
The 456 megawatts project is a national pride project being developed in Dolakha District in Nepal with funding all generated from internal sources including government agencies, companies, and public. The project is expected to be a major milestone and contributor to the capacity of electricity generation of the country. The project’s deadline has been delayed multiple times owing to 2015 April earthquake, subsequent blockades, and the present coronavirus pandemic.
The project first started testing its tunnel last month sending water through them. The test was stopped owing to a leak in the tunnel. The testing was halted to solve issues with leakage in one of the gates in the tunnel. The company issued a press release on May 20 to notify the leakage concern clarifying the need to rectify the problem before proceeding with the testing phase. “After rectification only, the project can move to conduct wet test on all other hydro mechanical and civil components”, the press release said.
However, as per the project’s spokesperson, the problem has now been resolved and the subsequent testing phase of the project has resumed. Likewise, all other testing in pipes and valves have been completed with success. The company has informed that in absence of further technical issues and pandemic concerns, the project is most likely to come under operation in about a month’s time.
As per the company’s financial report, the cost of the project has alarmingly increased by over 100 percent due to the frequent interruptions. Initial per megawatt cost of the project was planned at around 80 million NRs which has now reached over NRs. 180 million per megawatt. The project is expected to generate an annual revenue of around NRs. 9 billion.
This project stands among one of the biggest project initiatives of the country. Hence, its completion is of paramount significance to the economy. The country is eagerly waiting for its due completion as Nepal hopes to take advantage of the massive energy generation potential of the project.