HYDRO Nepal Journal – Issue 4 (January 2009)

Table of Contents
Articles Authors PDF Pages
The Kosi Pralaya
Could the Catastrophe have been Averted? And What Next?

The Kosi river breached its eastern embankment at Kushah in Nepal on August 18, 2008 causing havoc and misery to over 50,000 Nepalese and 2.5 million Indians in the state of Bihar. The affected people lost their homes, farmlands and livelihoods. Four months after the disaster, the affected people are still living in plastic tents in winter. Due to the impact of this catastrophe on the more industrialized and prosperous eastern Nepal, the overall effect on the country’s economy has been severe. At the time of the breach, the river was actually below the level of normal discharge. There was no big flood in Kosi. This was not Nature’s wrath but simply human failings. Bihar’s Water Resources Minister, Vijender Yadav, admitted “The breach happened due to lackadaisical maintenance of the embankment’, but laid the blame on the “previous government”. With timely action such a disaster could have been averted.
Saif Uddin Soz, India’s Union Minister for Water Resources, has already said publicly that “Kosi is in focus this time in particular…our main interest is flood control and irrigation,” a statement that puts focus on implementation of the Sapta Kosi High Dam in Nepal. This dam will be built at a great social and environmental cost to the Nepalese people due to submergence of limited fertile valleys, displacement of large number of villagers and over 300 km of very large link canals from both banks of the dam (Kosi-Mechi and Kosi-Ghagra Links) to the Indian border. The attraction to Nepal is, of course, the 3,300 MW of power it will make available for export. The Sapta Kosi High Dam needs to wait until the vital 13-year pending issues of the “signed, sealed and done” 6,720 MW Pancheshwar Multipurpose Project on the Mahakali are finalized.

Keywords: Kosi Catastrophe, Sapta Kosi high dam, Kosi barrage, flood, Nepal

SB Pun View PDF 2-7
Accelerated Transmission Development For Accelerated Power Development

Due to our lack of vision, planning and other mistakes, Nepal is in a very serious situation of load shedding. The nation is about 200 MW deficit of power supply. Hydropower development is an endeavor related with several sectors. It cannot be taken as only a commercial sector considering that businessmen will make all necessary things when there is a demand. In the past, the transmission sector has not been given due importance. Because of the complex nature of transmission, there should only be one transmission operator in the country. Based on the periodic basin-wise generation plan of the nation, we should prepare an accelerated Development Plan. The Basin Plan should indicate how and where local level, regional level and national level hydro plants will be connected to the grid, and the sequence of developing the basin transmission network.

Keywords: Basin transmission plan, accelerated transmission development, and accelerated power development

Sher Singh Bhat View PDF 8-10
Some Features of China’s Small Hydropower

China developed small hydropower (SHP) with its own resources instead of importing advanced technology from other countries. SHP has been instrumental in rural electrification. In 1997, SHP accounted for 28.6% of whole exploitable hydro energy in China. The peculiarities of SHP of China are:
1. Decentralized approach for SHP development with county as basic unit,
2. Special policies and strategies adopted
– Self construction, self management and self consumption
– Rural hydropower development fund set up – levy of 2 cents of each kWh
– Electricity generates electricity policy
3. Various Channels of investment are mobilized
To exploit China’s experience in SHP the International Network on Small Hydropower (IN-SHP) was established in Hangzhou, China.

Keywords: Small hydropower, rural electrification, China

Tong Jiandong View PDF 11-14
Hydropower Development Plans and Progress in Lao PDR1

Laos is a mountainous country with very favorable conditions of hydropower development. Rainfall is considered high. It has 26,000 MW of theoretical potential. The Laos Govt. has a strategy to use hydropower to eradicate poverty. It has continuously made numbers of agreements with the neighboring country Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia for increased power export. The companies developing and exporting hydropower also has a system to include importing company as equity share holder of the company. It will supply 7000 MW and 5000 MW to Thailand and Vietnam respectively by 2020. It has set a target to increase domestic electrification from present 60% to 90% by 2020. The participation of private sector is sought and promoted through Build -Own- OperateTransfer approach. The exports of power sector amounts to 30% of all Laos export Levels.

Keywords: Hydro power development in Laos, IPP projects in Laos

Xaypaseuth Phomsoupha View PDF 15-17
Putting a Price-Tag on Humanity: Development-Forced Displaced Communities’ Fight for More than Just Compensation

The impoverishment commonly associated with development-induced displacement often occurs because of government and development agencies’ reliance on compensation as a remedy for resettlement. This study focuses on the inadequacy of compensation use in development-induced forced displacement and resettlement by analyzing 50 recent development projects that involved forced displacement. The aim is for increased understanding leading to action to lessen the impoverishing effects of development-induced displacement.

Keywords: Development; displacement; resettlement; compensation

Julie Koppel Maldonado View PDF 18-20
The Need and Use of Geographic Information Systems for Environmental Impact Assessment in Nepal

Geographical applications in EIA studies is appropriate to build up and extend their knowledge and skills in using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA), and obtain practical experience in the application of GIS technologies and disciplines. This article highlights emerging topics related to the principles and practice of EIA, including concepts, tools and methods, and related issues. GIS as a tool will be used to visually illustrate the implications of spatial decisions. GIS is applied in all EIA stages: from the acquisition, storage and display of thematic information relative to the vulnerability of the affected resources, to impact prediction and qualification, evaluation, and finally, presentation. This paper highlights how GIS applications using in EIA process in different countries and find out possibility to incorporate those applications in EIA studies in Nepal.

Keywords: Environmental Impact Assessment, Geographical Information System, Nepal

Ramesh Prasad Bhatt View PDF 21-23
How Movements Move?
Evaluating the Role of Ideology and Leadership in Environmental Movement
Dynamics in India with Special Reference to the Narmada Bachao Andolan

Lawrence Cox (1999) has argued that the established perspectives on social movements operate with an inadequately narrow conception of the ‘object’ that is being studied and thus tends to ‘reify’ “movements” as usual activity against essentially static backgrounds, and in its place, he advocates a concept of social movement as the more or less developed articulation of situated rationalities. Following Cox, therefore, the present study perceives social movements as articulations of situated rationalities by perceiving them as a tactical, dialectical response to the harsh realities of the political system. This would help us capture the essential dynamic and transformative aspects of the movement. Any social movement, and for that matter, environmental movements are characterized by the presence of agencies and structural components, which, however, are not a priori and static. They are rather dynamic and get changed and transformed in the course of the movement. Precisely for this reason, the environmental movements can at best be comprehended by way of locating and analyzing the dynamism and transformations of the movements produced by the dialectical interaction of the various components and parameters of the movement over a span of time. Hence, the present paper aims to evaluate the dynamics and transformations of the environmental movements in India, taking the case of the Narmada Bachao Andolan, and, adopting a strategic relational approach within the agent-structure framework as its framework of analysis. For the present purpose, however, we have taken only two variables, namely, Ideology and Leadership and attempted the analysis of their contributions in producing movement dynamics.

Keywords: Anti-dam movement, development, dynamism and transformations, environmental movements, hydropolitics, ideology, leadership, movements, social movements, strategic relational approach

Padam Nepal View PDF 24-29
Arun-III Project: Nepal’s Electricity Crisis and its Role in Current Load Shedding and Potential Role 10 Years Hence

It has become fashionable to blame ‘cancellation’ of the Arun-III hydroelectric project by the World Bank in 1995 in reference to Nepal’s current electricity crisis, inferring that had it been implemented consumers in Nepal would not be facing the current load shedding problem. Now is the time for a dispassionate and detached analysis of the two scenarios, with and without Arun-III. The analysis of alternative scenarios demonstrates that implementation of the Arun-III 201 MW project in 1995 would not have eliminated load shedding from 2000 onwards; in fact, the power deficit may have been of a higher magnitude. Now, Arun-III planning is for a new incarnation with a capacity of 402 MW, expected to be completed within 10 years. But as the output of this project has been slated for export, it, too, will not alleviate the load shedding problem of Nepal.

Keywords: Arun III Project, load sheding, Nepal

Ratna Sansar Shrestha View PDF 30-35
Rural Entrepreneurship through Electricity

Rural electrification in Nepal is supported mostly by bilateral donors and banks as a top down supply driven activity with emphasis on generation and transmission, but not focusing on supplying electricity to the maximum number of rural people. In the past, rural electrification was awarded as political favors, leading to inefficiency. Further, it could not further the efficient development of energy, which requires marketing innovation. The result of such rural power distribution created a condition where everybody was at fault and a loser.
An innovative approach involving the rural communities has the potential of reversing this trend, and allowing communities themselves to manage local rural electrification systems. This approach has raised public interest in Community Development and Rural Electrification with the establishment of about 450 rural electricity communities in Nepal. In anticipation, these communities are willingly contributing 20% matching fund of total rural electrification cost. Since 2003 to 2008, 189,770 households (about 45,000 households annually) have gotten access to electricity in rural areas through the promotion of community-based electricity development. Clearly, this is a significant positive response from the rural population. Like community forestry before it, community rural electrification is also a success story in Nepal. The new approach has paved the way to gender equality. It helped to generate more economic activities, to activate productive end use of electricity, developed rural entrepreneurship and released the poorest of poor population from the ‘bonds’ of the old social structure.

Keywords: Rural electrification, community involvement, community based organizations (CBO), rural entrepreneurship, delivery mechanism and ownership, Nepal

RC Pandey View PDF 36-29
The Case for Subsidizing Hydroelectricity Development in Nepal

We should stop using imported energy and have our own source of energy. When we have our own clean form of energy, the government or the developers should not hesitate to promote it. It’s not only our nation’s economy that we will be helping, but also the world environment that we will be protecting. We should find ways to reduce the import of petroleum products and to promote hydropower. Although the new government has shown keen interest in bailing Nepal out of the energy crisis, it needs to act now to bring acts and laws to promote hydropower. No law should be able to stop hydropower being developed. The government should spend on hydropower even if it has to tax petroleum products. It should provide incentives to hydropower developers.

Keywords: Hydropower, renewable energy, CDM (Clean Development Mechanism), imported energy, cross subsidizing in hydropower

Amir Manandhar View PDF 40-41
Quasi - 3D and Full - 3D Approaches for Numerical Simulation in Axial Flow Hydraulic Turbine

Water passes through the rows of stationary and rotating blades in the turbine space and thus the flow becomes complex. The application of computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is steadily increasing to improve design of hydraulic turbines. The numerical flow simulation in the hydraulic turbine space can either be based on potential or viscous flow theory. In both the approaches, detailed flow behavior in complete turbine space is obtained. The quasi- 3D potential flow approach is quick and simple as compared to full-3D viscous flow methods of analysis but do not take into account the friction losses, which need to be computed separately. The direct flow analysis has been carried out in an experimentally tested model of axial flow hydraulic turbine using the two approaches and the comparison of flow pattern and computed parameters in runner is made in present paper. The computed efficiencies and other performance parameters have also been compared with experimental values at some critical points for validation.

Keywords: Hydraulic turbine, computational fluid dynamics, meridional flow, circulation

Vishnu Prasad, K.S. Sayann, Prof P. Krishnamachar View PDF 42-48
An Interview with Mr. Sriranjan Lacoul,
Director General, Department Of Electricity Development (DOED),Government of Nepal
Mr. Sriranjan Lacoul View PDF 54-55
An Interview with Mr. Uttar Kumar Shrestha
Managing Director of Nepal Electricity Authority, Nepal
Mr. Uttar Kumar Shrestha View PDF 59-61
Topics PDF Pages
Relocation Failures in Sri Lanka:
A Short History of Internal Displacement and Resettlement
View PDF 49-51
Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Fund Development Board
View PDF 52-53
Vision 2020: Hydropower – A Vision for Growth
View PDF 56-58