Sunday, September 17, 2017

Dam Good!




One thing that strikes you as you travel to Kugti is the number of hydro-electric projects that have sprung up all over the Chamba Valley.

From the moment you leave the Punjab plains and enter Himachal Pradesh, you see power projects of assorted shapes and sizes all along the route. Many of them are the conventional, small-scale run-of-the-river projects where you have a small dam blocking the river and the resulting resorvoir being used to generate electricity. Others are a lot more complex, and the only sign of their existence is the tunnels that have been bored through the mountains, to divert waters into long pipes that feed hidden turbines.

It may not make the river look cleaner or prettier but it certainly helps the local population access one thing that makes the winter months more bearable: electricity. Thanks to projects like these, Himachal Pradesh is able to generate more than 8500MW of electricity which it is able sell to states located downstream.

Perhaps the largest player in this valley is the National Hydro Power Corp (NHPC), a central public-sector enterprise that has set up some of the largest power plants on the Ravi river, such as the Chamera-I and Chamera-II projects. Having decided to settle down for a long haul, NHPC has numerous office/staff/residential complexes all along the Chamba valley, commanding some of the best views in this district!

Private players are not too far behind. GMR and Lanco too have a growing presence here with the former represented by deep green container-box offices set up all along the road up to Holi.



Now, which are the small HEPs located along the road to Kugti? 

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REFERENCES & LINKS


* NHPC -- http://www.nhpcindia.com/projects-overview.htm
- presently has an installation base of 6667 MW from 21 hydropower stations on ownership basis including projects taken up in Joint Venture.

* GMR - http://www.gmrgroup.in/energy-gmr-bajoli-power-project.aspx
- Bajoli-Holi 180MW project on Ravi - to be commissioned in 2018

* Lanco Budhil Project -- http://www.lancogroup.com/DynTestForm.aspx?PageID=29
- 70 MW plant commissioned in 2012
- Village Thalla, P.O. Ghared, Tehsil Bharmour, District Chamba 

* Hydro-Electric Power in Himachal Pradesh - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydroelectric_power_in_Himachal_Pradesh
- 8,418 MW is harnessed so far

* Hydro Electric Projects in HP - http://india-wris.nrsc.gov.in/wrpinfo/index.php?title=Hydro_Electric_Projects_in_Himachal_Pradesh
* Himachal Pradesh Power Corp - http://www.hppcl.in/page/hydro.aspx
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