HYDRO Nepal Journal – Issue 15 (July 2014)

Table of Contents
Editorial PDF Pages
Time to Make Bold and Sensible Decisions
View PDF 5-5
Articles Authors PDF Pages
6,480 MW Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project Six Vital Issues on Pancheshwar to be Addressed before Cashing Modi’s One Billion US Dollars

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Nepal in August 2014 was instrumental in reinvigorating the stalled 6,480 MW Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project. In particular, the one billion US Dollar soft loan for infrastructures that Modi offered to Nepal has generated much enthusiasm. As the Mahakali Treaty was ratified in September 1996, and as public memory is short, this article reverts back 18 years ago into the heady days when the Water Resources Minister, Pashupati SJB Rana, publicly claimed that the sun would now begin to ‘rise from the west’! At that time, even the leaders in the opposing camp (the CPN-UML), started to count their chickens in billions and billions of rupees accruing from the sale of electricity to India. Today, that ‘Som Sharma euphoria’ has again started to percolate among our political leaders. The article, hence, poses six vital issues that need to be ‘fixed’ before the Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project can begin to taxi along the runway.

Keywords: Mahakali Treaty; Panchameshwar Multipupose project; Nepal

SB Pun View PDF 7-15
Evaluation of Seismic Events Occurred after Filling and Drawdown of the Reservoir at Song Tranh 2 HPP in Vietnam

Reservoir-induced earthquakes are a challenging issue for hydropower, and have occurred at many sites around the world. However, each event is unique in itself and depends on the geo-tectonics and geo-hydrology of the area in which the event is situated. This article focuses on seismic events at the Song Tranh 2 hydropower project located in Quang Nam province, Vietnam. The construction of the 96 meter high Roller Compacted Concrete (RCC) dam of this project was completed in August 2011. Approximately one year after commissioning, the dam began experiencing a serious leakage problem through the dam body. In addition, a series of earthquakes occurred near the project area, and continued for several months. The high intensity and magnitude of the earthquakes caused damage to the project and promoted fear among the local people living in the downstream valley. The issues drew significant media attention and thousands of articles about this project were written within a short time. As a result, dam authorities have been subject to extreme public pressure.This paper describes the earthquake events and difficult situation that both the local population and authorities faced in its aftermath. In addition, we analyze seismic events qualitatively,using data and information on the water filling and drawdown processes.

Keywords: Reservoir; Hydropower; Earthquake; Vietnam

Nghia Quoc Trinh, Krishna Kanta Panthi View PDF 16-20
May You Live in Interesting Times

There is a phrase (erroneously) attributed to the Chinese that says, “May you live in interesting times.” It’s called the Chinese curse, because it is commonly accepted as a euphemism to actually mean “May you experience disorder and trauma in your life.” However, others have translated this phrase to mean something positive. “Interesting” in that sense connotes possibility, opportunity and unexpected developments.
The past six months in Nepal’s hydroscape have been “interesting,” to say the least. Let us hope that all the action and commotion of the summer 2014 follows the latter interpretation of that phrase.

Christopher Butler View PDF 21-22
Runoff Forecasting and Its Application in Reservoir Operation and Flood Warnings in Nepal

Runoff forecasting is a very useful tool in hydrology to predict runoff based on a weather forecast. In developed countries, the method is also currently used for flood forecasting, and to predict runoff for hydropower reservoirs and water allocation for irrigation. But this is not the case in Nepal. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how to set up a system for runoff forecasting for a Nepalese catchment and illustrate how these procedures could be utilized in reservoir operation and flood warnings. This paper provides the necessary steps for implementing such a system in Nepal, including the selection of a meteorological forecast model, bias correction of the model output, HBV model set up, and runoff forecast simulation.

Keywords: Runoff forecasting; Bias correction; HBV model calibration; Warning limits; Nepal

Anup Khanal, Netra Prasad Timalsina, Knut Alfredsen View PDF  23-29
Impacts of Climate Change as Evident in the Langtang Catchment

Nepal has felt the adverse impact of climate change even though its contribution to global greenhouse gases (GHGs) is negligible. Many scientists have expressed concern that the general rise in temperatures at high altitudes poses a serious environmental and humanitarian threat in Nepal as many glaciers and glacial lakes are located in the high Himalayas. For this study, I have observed rising temperatures in the Langtang catchment and compared the proportional rise of high altitude and low altitude temperatures as these will have serious implications for glaciers and glacial lakes in the region. As well, conducted a time series observation of water flow and noted that the river flow in the Langtang catchment are decreasing. Given these findings, Nepal may be facing increasing water scarcity while also keeping more serious watch on glacial melt.

Keywords: Climate change; Greenhouse gases; Langtang catchment; Glacial melt; Nepal

Narayan Prasad Gautam View PDF  30-36
Prospects of Storage and Pumped-Storage Hydropower for Enhancing Integrated Nepal Power Systems

An Integrated Power System (IPS) should have electrical energy generating plants for base load (e.g., nuclear and thermal plants) and peak load (e.g., hydropower plants) so that they can work in coordination in such a way that the demand is met in time. In Nepal, the Integrated Nepal Power System (INPS) is a hydro-dominated system where the base and intermediate power demands are covered primarily by run-of-river hydropower plants and the peak demand by seasonal storage and several diesel power plants of lower capacity. The INPS should have sufficient natural storage and forced storage power plants to improve the system’s reliability. On top of that, daily peak electrical demand could also be adequately covered by demand-side management, using a pumped-storage hydropower plant that can employ a system’s surplus energy during low demand period for pumping. To rectify this extreme imbalance of installed capacity in Nepal, this paper explores the prospect of storage and pumped-storage power plants for enhancing INPS. A case study of Rupa-Begnas pumped-storage hydropower is highlighted for these purposes.

Keywords: Integrated power system; Grid regulation; Storage hydropower; Pumped-storage hydropower; Nepal

Neeraj Kumar Sah, Madhab Uprety, Sangharsha Bhandari,Jeevika Khadka, Prativa Kharel, Saurav Suman, Ramesh Kumar Maskey View PDF  37-41
Freshwater Scarcity and Sustainable Water Management in the Hindu Kush-Himalayan (HKH) Region

Water is essential for every life on the earth and for many forms of socioeconomic development activity. Freshwater scarcity is a major issue in the developing world in terms of human consumption and irrigation. Water is not evenly distributed therefore some regions (particularly in South Asia and Africa) will experience intensified water scarcity in coming years. The stressors on water are population growth and climate change. These stressors are exacerbated by poor management and policy on the part of ruling governments. Climate change is of keen interest as it will impact water availability in unpredictable ways. In this context, it is essential to develop efficient adaptive tactics (e.g., water storage) to anticipate these changes. The paper, then, will look into the global scenario of water demand, as well as examine regional conflicts that may become worse under the stress of water scarcity.

Keywords: Water scarcity; Water demand and supply; Water management; Watershed interventions; HKH region

Pabitra Gurung,Tashi Yang Chung Sherpa View PDF  42-47
Does Short and Long Run Equilibrium Exists Between Electricity Consumption and Foreign Aid

Because of its limited and unmanaged internal resources to promote socio-economic development, Nepal has become an aid-dependent country. Past trends show that the majority of extant hydropower projects in Nepal were built through aid. In this light, using a single equation model, this study attempts to investigate short and long run equilibrium between two variables constructed from data collected between 1974-2011: 1) electricity consumption as the dependent variable, and 2) foreign aid as explanatory variable. There are two co-integrating equations that indicate a long run equilibrium between the variables. The long run elasticity coefficient reveals that a 1% change in foreign aid will change the electricity consumption by 0.48%. The results of ECM indicate that there is both short and long run equilibrium in the system. The coefficient of one period lag residual is negative and significant which represents the long run equilibrium. The coefficient is -0.336, which means that the system corrects its previous period disequilibrium at a speed of 33.6% annually.

Keywords: Electricity consumption; Foreign aid; Co-integration; Short run; Long run; Error correction

Kamal Raj Dhungel View PDF  48-52
Harnessing Fisheries Innovation for Transformational Impact in Nepal

In Nepal, per capita fish production lags far below most of the world. To be on par with our neighbors, present fish production would need to be increased at least three- or fourfold. For fish production to have a transformational impact on Nepal’s economy, an increase of four- or fivefold would be needed within a decade before the climate change could impact severely the industry. As well, businesses and the government would need to move quickly to produce a more favorable environment for job creation. However, for this transformation to happen pronouncedly, we need to know what additional fisheries technologies would best suit to enhance substantial production under putative climate changes and stimulating socioeconomics for more job and income opportunities. In this paper, we propose several solutions keeping intact aquatic biodiversity. 1) Carp, catfish Pangasius spp, tilapia and rainbow trout would provide the best returns from the marketplace. 2) Recreational fisheries and further cold water aquaculture opportunities need to be improved, 3) Head and tail waters of Pico-, micro-, and mega-hydropower should be prioritized as an area of aquaculture concern for harnessing Nepal’s vertical gradient landscape.

Keywords: Fisheries; Innovation; Cold water aquaculture; Hydropower integration; Nepal

Tek Bahadur Gurung View PDF  53-59
Comparative Study of Flood Calculation Approaches, a Case Study of East Rapti River Basin, Nepal

Various approaches to high flood calculation have been used to inform the design of hydraulic structures and flood protection works in Nepal. To assess potential flood volumes, a variety of methods and calculations are employed and the highest figure is adopted as correct so as to err on the side of safety. This approach, while safe, can result in excessively uneconomic design. As well, this approach erodes the designer’s confidence in the process to determine the potential flood volume and perpetuates such sub-optimal approaches. Through the case study of East Rapti River, this paper tries to shed light on various ungauged basin approaches of flood prediction currently in practice. It also compares the relative performance of those approaches using statistical methods and observed data. From the study, Jha PCJ method (1996) yielded a comparable result with the gauged basin methods. A remarkably notable fact obtained is that all the ungauged basin methods except rational method underestimated the flood discharge as compared to that obtained from the frequency analysis based on measured data sets.

Keywords: Flood control; Flood; Comparative study; Ungauged basin; Nepal

Krishna Prasad Rijal View PDF  60-64
Improved Particle Swarm Optimization Algorithm for Hydrothermal Generation Scheduling

The short term hydrothermal scheduling (STHTS) problem is a complicated nonlinear dynamic constrained optimization problem, which plays an important role in the economic operation of electric power systems. The objective of hydro thermal generation scheduling is to minimize the overall operation cost and to satisfy the given constraints by scheduling optimally the power outputs of all hydro and thermal units under study periods, given electrical load and limited water resource. This paper presents an improved particle swarm optimization (IPSO) algorithm for solving the STHTS problem considering valve point loading for fixed head hydro-thermal system. Various other heuristic algorithms such as basic PSO, modified PSO, differential evolution, real variable genetic algorithm (RVGA) are also implemented on the same problem. The programs for these algorithms have been developed in Matlab software. From the simulation results, it is found that the IPSO based approach is able to provide a better solution at a lesser computational effort.

Keywords: Availability based tariff; Hydro power input-output model; Hydro-thermal scheduling; Heuristic approaches; Particle swarm optimization; Valve-point loading

Deepika Yadav, R. Naresh, Veena Sharma View PDF  65-72
The Analysis of Pine Needles as a Substrate for Gasification

The forests of Chir pine (Pinus Roxburgii) encompass 97.4 thousand acres or 16.15 % of the total forest land of Uttrakhand, a state in India. According to Forest Department of India, Dehradun, a massive forest fire in 1995 engulfed 14.7 thousand acres of valuable forest area through 2,272 forest fire incidents in Uttrakhand, which resulted in the loss of crores of rupees and created various long-lasting ecological consequences. The fires damaged the fertile top layer of the soil and left a layer of pine needle litter that prevented rain water from being absorbed by the soil and contributed to early depletion of the groundwater cycle and stopped grass growth, thus depriving livestock of important food. So the question of what to do with these pine needles is an important one for forest and livestock. Regarding this problem, the German organization, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, has been studying ways to use pine needles as a feedstock for downdraft gasifiers.

Keywords: Chemical analysis; Flue gas analysis; Combustion analysis; India

Alok Dhaundiyal, V. K. Gupta View PDF 73-81
Fishing Gear in the Sondu-Miriu River: Level of Use, Preference and Selectivity

Artisan fishers of Osodo beach of Sondu-Miriu River (Kenya) use both traditional and modern gear to catch riverine fish species. This study, conducted between August 2006 and July 2007, revealed that fishers most predominantly used gear were the seine nets (42%) and the gill nets (28%). Other used gear include long lines (14%); fish baskets (9%) and weirs (7%). The selectivity of this fishing gear varied with the developmental stages of the fish to be caught. Non-selective gear caught both targeted and non-targeted species irrespective of size and development stages. The ranking of selective to non-selective fishing gear was the long lines, fish baskets, weirs, gill nets and beach nets at 2%, 11%, 16%, 24% and 32%, respectively. The non-selective fishing gear may have negative impacts on the riverine fish by reducing spawning biomass and lacustrine fish recruitment. These findings underscore the need for greater appreciation, research, and adaptation of appropriate fishing gear to ensure sustainable utilization of the riverine fisheries in Sondu-Miriu River.

Keywords: Sondu-Miriu River; Osodo beach; Riverine fish; Lacustrine fish; Fishing gear

Brian M. Waswala-Olewe,James Okot Okuku, Richard Kennedy Oginga Abila View PDF 82-86

Topics PDF Pages
Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project – An Overview”
View PDF 6-6
JVS/GWP Nepal Activities
View PDF 91-92
Book Review Assessing the Costs of Climate Change and Adaptation in South Asia
View PDF 93-94
Achieve The Annapurna Water Cooperation Consensus - Upendra Gautam
View PDF 90,92
Personality Profile
Dr. Hariman Shrestha – A Hydropower Pioneer of Nepal
View PDF 88-89