Sunday, November 29, 2009 7:11
Mr Kunio Senga
South Asia Dept., ADB
Two mainstream vernacular dailies (Gorkhapatra yesterday and Nagarik on Friday) have reported that ADB is pulling out of West Seti project. We in Nepal would appreciate it if you could confirm the news.
I have been closely studying this project since some time and in my considered opinion this is “one of the best projects of its genre, because it not only generates peak-in energy – good quality power – but also does so at low cost and its implementation, further, results in flood control and dry season augmented flow for lower riparian areas. Moreover, export of hydropower to India from this project results in carbon offset benefit which is tradable in the carbon market and has potential as a good source of revenue.” However, all these benefits don’t accrue to Nepal. My article on this was published in Issue # 5 (July 2009) of Hydro Nepal (journal of water, energy and environment)” which is also available at blog (available at following link):
I firmly believe that this project should be built. However, it should be built such that Nepal uses the low cost peak-in energy for the industrialization of Nepal from which employment could be generated at the higher plane (not just to mitigate the problem of load shedding here) and head toward becoming a self reliant economy (for commodities like cement). Even “10,000 MW task force” has concluded that by the time this project is commissioned Nepal will be in a position to use most of the energy generated by this project. Moreover, Nepal should use the augmented flow to increase cropping intensity in over 250,000 hectares of land in west Terai thereby contributing to the achievement of food security.
With best regards,
Ratna Sansar Shrestha