LANDSLIDES, FLOODS HIT HYDRO PROJECTS

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    Landslides and floods have taken their toll on under-construction hydropower projects in Lamjung district.

    Works such as tunnel digging, penstock piping and power house construction have come to a standstill, adding up cost burden.

    The Rs8.29-billion Super-Dordi Project (49.6MW) undertaken by People’s Hydropower Company is scheduled to be completed by 2019, but the works are moving at snail’s pace.

    Ramesh Sigdel, the project’s site in-charge said the tunnel construction requires blasting thrice a day but they are only doing it once currently. “Continuous rainfall and landslides and rock-fall at the project site have created obstacles,” he said. “Gravelled roads are flooded with water, halting the inflow of construction materials.” Similar is the story at Dordi Khola Hydropower Project being built by Himalayan Power Partner. It is scheduled to complete next year, but the river has swept away the embankment and blocked the access road, halting construction works. “Materials for tunnel construction cannot be hauled because of the landslides and floods. A few tasks are being carried out at the power house, but we are struggling to regain momentum,” said the project’s chief Ram Chandra Poudel. “Out of 250 workers, 150 are on leave. Only 25 percent of the project has been completed.”

    At the Upper Dordi project, works on the embankment have also come to a halt. “The work flow is not as smooth as required,” said the project’s operator Rajendra Wasti. “Haulers carrying materials are stranded at the Udipur and the workshop at Kirtipur Beshi has not been able to roll penstock pipes.”

    Source : The Kathmandu Post