LAMJUNG, MAR 23 – A build-up of sand at the dam of the Middle Marsyangdi Hydropower Project has resulted in damage to its civil and mechanical structures, project engineers said. They have blamed the problem, which emerged barely six years after the project was completed, on inadequate attention paid during the construction. The 70 MW project located inLamjung district was finished in 2008The issue of sand build-up was revealed after the project chief Rajesh Kumar Pandey submitted a report to visiting Energy Minister Radha Gyawali on Saturday mentioning the problem.
The report states that the sand that piles up at the dam during the monsoon has harmed the civil and mechanical structures forcing the project to carry out repeated maintenance.
Pandey informed the minister that because of the damage, the project has to repair all the three spillway gates on the dam through which the water is let out, the concrete underneath the gates and one of its two turbines every year.
“Other technical problems have also been emerging regularly,” he said.
Minister Gyawali, who is on an inspection visit to the project site, said that a team of experts would soon be formed to solve the problem.
“We have to be careful not to allow the same problem to occur in other projects,” said the minister who is also the chairman of the Nepal Electricity Authority (NEA), the developer of the project.
The project said that it had planned to ask its consultant Fichtner JV to identify the problem. “We have urged the NEA to make a board decision so that we can follow this course of action,” said Krishna Chandra Joshi, administrative officer of the project centre.
The dam of the Middle Marsyangdi Hydropower Project is located at Udipur while the powerhouse is situated at Siudibar, Bhotewodar. The construction of the project started in 2002 and it cost Rs29 billion, way above the initial estimate of Rs13 billion.
The project said that it had been spending around Rs10 million on repair and maintenance annually. The inspection team led by Gyawali also examined the 69 MW Marsyangdi Hydropower Project at Abu Khaireni, Tanahun.
Source : eKantipur