Nine hydel projects at risk of license revocation amidst feasibility study approval hurdles

KATHMANDU: The licenses of nine hydropower projects, collectively generating 461 megawatts, face potential revocation as they have been unable to secure approval for feasibility studies from national parks and conservation areas.

Despite obtaining survey licenses from the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources, and Irrigation, these projects have been denied permission by the Ministry of Forests and Environment. The affected projects, having already paid significant royalties, now confront the threat of losing their licenses.

A delegation led by Ganesh Karki, President of the Independent Power Producers Association of Nepal (IPPAN), met with Deepak Kharal, Secretary at the Ministry of Forests and Environment, seeking resolution and facilitation for the projects. Promoters argue that threatening arrests due to dissatisfaction with certain provisions is unfair.

Projects encountering obstacles include the Middle Ghunsa Hydropower Project (30 MW), Upper Pelma Khola Hydropower Project (24.8 MW), and Gumchhe Khola Hydropower Project (7.5 MW).

Additionally, Ghunsa Khola Hydropower Project (155 MW), Lagang Khola Hydroelectric Project (9.7 MW), Yanma Khola Hydroelectric Project (65.8 MW), Simbuwa River Hydroelectric Project (40 MW), Langtang River Hydroelectric Project (20.3 MW), and Upper Barun River Hydroelectric Project (109 MW) are facing the risk of license revocation.

Promoters emphasized their substantial royalty contributions over the last five years and expressed frustration over their inability to obtain study permits from the Ministry of Forests. Secretary Kharal pledged to address the concerns and challenges faced by the hydropower projects.

Fiscal Nepal |
Thursday February 15, 2024, 10:26:02 AM |

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