Several hydro power projects that have signed a Power Purchase Agreement with the Nepal Electricity Authority have missed their deadline to start generating power.
Of the 27 projects (with total installed capacity of around 100 MW) that are running behind schedule, 13 are still in the initial stage.
Sher Singh Bhat, Spokesperson for the NEA, said if around 100 MW were to be added to the national grid, power outage hours can be slashed by around two hours in the rainy season and one hour in the dry season.
A number of binding clauses are included in the PPA agreement but they are not implemented, said Bhat. “Power producers are paying fines for delay in power production. Several of them have reasonable causes for failing to meet the deadline as they have submitted their regular reports.”
The largest of the projects that have entered into a PPA with the NEA but are yet to produce power are Lower Modi I (9,900 KW) in Parbat and Sipring Khola (9,658 KW), Dolakha.
Upendra Raj Gautam, Director of United Modi Hydro Power Private Limited, which is constructing Lower Modi I, said the project will go into testing phase within 15 days. Asked why the project was delayed by a year, Gautam attributed the delay to repeated strikes, land acquisition issues and government red tape.
“As the fines for missing deadlines are not substantial, power producers often are not compelled to meet the deadline. This is the main reason for the delay,” said Anup Kumar Upadhayaya, Spokesperson for the Ministry of Energy.
Source : eKantipur