Upper Marshyangdi-A hydro likely to be ready in Sept
- AASH GURUNG, LAMJUNG Feb 24, 2016- The construction of the Upper Marshyangdi-A hydropower plant is likely to be completed within the next seven months, the contractor for the 50 MW project said. The contractor Sino Hydro Resources has planned to complete the construction work by September after it was delayed by the earthquake and Indian embargo which led to shortages of fuel and building materials. Arjun Gurung, public relations officer of Sino Hydro Resources, said that the contractor had pushed the deadline back to September from January after work was held up by the tremor and blockade.
After the border closure was lifted at the beginning of February, the project has been making rapid progress. Gurung said that construction materials stuck at the border points had started arriving at the project site.
Sino Hydro Sagarmatha Power Company is the developer of the project in which Chinese company Sino Hydro has a 90 percent stake and Nepali company Sagarmatha Power Company holds the rest of the shares.
Karna Adhikari, public relations officer of Sino Hydro Sagarmatha Power Company, said that 85 percent of the construction work at the dam site in Nadi, Bhulbhule-5 had been completed. The powerhouse has been completed, and only the finishing touches have to be put in.
“Almost all the civil works have been completed,” said Adhikari. “Only a few tasks related to hydro-mechanical and electro-mechanical works which were affected by the blockade remain to be done.” The estimated cost of the project is Rs12 billion, but the company said that there would be cost overruns amounting to Rs1 billion due to the earthquake and blockade. The construction of the project started in 2012.
According to project sources, the project has reduced the number of workers as the civil construction works are nearing completion. When the construction work was progressing in full swing, more than 1,300 people were working at the project. The workforce has now shrunk to 600 persons.
About 200 workers who had gone home after the construction project came to a halt due to the blockade will be returning to work. “We are asking them to come back to work,” said Gurung. “We will hire more workers if required.” The number of Chinese workers employed at the project has decreased from 250 to 80. The project consumes 1,000 litres of diesel daily. The figure goes up to 2,500 litres when the entire workforce is present, according to Gurung. The hydropower project will have two turbines each producing 25 MW of electricity. The powerhouse has been built at Bhulbhule-3 and a 6.5-km-long tunnel has been constructed to deliver water to the powerhouse from the dam site located at Bhulbhule-5.