NEW DELHI, Sep 8: Chief Minister Nabam Tuki has drawn the attention of the Centre towards “few impediments” coming in development of hydropower in Arunachal Pradesh, a State that boasts of 40% of country’s total power potentials, and sought “genuine” steps to remove them to facilitate the State emerge as powerhouse of the country in its truest sense.
Attending a panel discussion on Hydropower Projects in North East here yesterday, Tuki said that the State was facing serious problems in getting Forest and Environment clearances (in some cases, it’s taking years together). He cited instances where environmental issues are raised in forest clearance cases even in projects wherein the environmental clearance has been already granted.
The Chief Minister requested the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests to have more positive role in hydropower development in Arunachal Pradesh.
He also pointed that due to staff constraints and other factors, the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), Central Water Commission (CWC) and the Geological Survey of India (GSI) are unable to speed up the issuance of Techno-Economical Clearance (TEC) despite their sincere efforts to examine the DPRs and issue the clearances.
Tuki also observed that for development of hydropower projects there is an urgent need to develop infrastructure, particularly roads. “Although most of the major roads needed for these projects have been covered under the Prime Minister’s Package yet their execution is taking time that needs to be expedited. In addition, there are some more major roads that need to be taken up at the earliest,” he pointed.
Further, Tuki said that as some projects will be implemented from this year therefore the transmission system for them should also be taken up simultaneously so as to have exact synchronization of both generation and transmission.
Highlighting the significance of hydropower, the Chief Minister viewed that besides producing clean energy devoid of carbon emissions, it would regulate flow of water during rainy seasons, moderate floods and consequently save enormous losses of life, property and agricultural prospects in downstream areas. He also pointed that these projects would offer direct and indirect employment opportunities to lakhs of people and boost local economy by enhancing economic activities, first during the development phase and later by providing readily available assured power to improve production and quality of life.
Earlier, the Chief Minister informed that of the projected 60,000 MW potential in the State, projects of almost 42,000 MW installed capacity have already been allotted while additional 10,000 MW is likely to be allotted soon.
“If developed, we can meet the major peak demand of almost entire Northern India,” Tuki added.
The panel discussion titled ‘Challenges Ahead’ was organized by the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) with Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia as the chief guest.
Besides ICC members and other economists and luminaries, the discussion was attended by MP Navin Jindal and representatives from the North East including Arunachal Power Minister Tanga Byaling and Hydropower Parliamentary Secretary R T Khunjuju.

 

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