Chhimi Dema

The construction of the 500kW mini-hydropower plant in Lunana would start next year, according to Economic Affairs Minister Loknath Sharma.

Lyonpo informed this while  responding to a question from the Gasa Member of Parliament (MP) Dorji Khandu during the question hour in the National Assembly. The MP asked about the  funding status of the proposed mini-hydro project in Lunana.

Dorji Khandu said that the government had allocated Nu 7 million (M) in the financial year 2019-2020 to conduct the Detailed Project Report (DPR) of the mini-hydro power project.

The DPR, prepared by the Druk Green Power Corporation, states that the estimated total power demand for electrification of 187 households in 11 villages and institutes (existing and upcoming) is about 500kw exclusive of Wachey village.

Lyonpo said that considering the climatic conditions in Lunana the project would take two years to complete—until the first quarter of 2023.

The estimated cost for the project, Lyonpo said, was Nu 663.55M.

“The project detail was submitted to South Korean Government’s official development assistance programme (ODA),” Lyonpo said.

Lyonpo said that electricity coverage in the country was not 100 percent because of protected areas from where the overhead power lines could not be taken.

In places without access to grid electricity, solar photo voltaic system would be installed, Lyonpo said.