Energy & Nepal

Nepal , Province-2 & Energy

Todays trends in the field of electrical engineering are Smart grids & metering, Power plant automation & floating solar plant system design. Access to electricity reduces human drudgery, enhances comfort and enables safer and cleaner environment. It boosts productivity and economic activity, creates jobs, and facilitates the delivery of education, health and government services. It is estimated that approximately 30% of the total population, mostly in remote villages, live in darkness. The electrification percentage of Nepal is 65%. The 30% of land has No reach of National/central grid. The overall electrical losses is nearly 23%. State-3 has higher potential for biomass energy, state 2 has highest potential for solar energy and state-7 has higher potential in hydropower as recommended by National Planning commissions (NPC).

There is a difference of perception between Indian investors and Nepalese engineers in the utilisation of water of the Himalayan rivers. Indian planners want to sell the Bhutan model of investment in hydroelectricity for export of energy to India, while Nepalese side wants to consider regulation of water the main purpose of storage dams, with generation of power as a byproduct. Unless these differences are reconciled, progress on the water and energy fronts is likely to be tardy.

Access to clean ,reliable and affordable energy will help the village to connect the world through the internet and mobile phone sand will create opportunities to boost local income. The notion of electricity access in Nepal through centralized generation and grid-based distribution has failed to supply electricity adequately to two-thirds of our population . The cost of maintenance and extending existing power line to the remote and electrified villages is too expensive and labor intense as well. The lack of efficiency of our state owned electricity companies have further slowed down this process. Especially the eastern region has become totally dependent on power imported from India.[15] Besides low generation capacity, the poor transmission network seems to be the major bottleneck in the Nepalese electricity sector.

Mini-Grid : A practical solution to Rural Energy Crisis

Mini grids are greater means to ensureelectricity generation closer to use and can totally transform the rural economy.they help to reduce state’s carbon emission by facilitating the use of low carbon energy such as solar & biomass. Mini-grids/micro-grids are not new to Nepal.. Some of them run completely on solar photovoltaic panels with battery storage; some are coupled with diesel generators; some are husk based, biomass based or hydro power based. The most interesting part of mini-grids is the flexibility it offers in accordance to the local resources and load demand. There have been numerous successful stories about these grids supplying good quality power for years, and there have also been cases of failure where the grids couldn’t sustain for more than a couple of months. However, the bright side remains that courtesy the mini-grids, the villages that were living in the dark for as long as three decades, could also become hopeful and receive electricity.

In order to streamline mini-grids projects, ensure project sustainability and continuity of these projects even when the electricity reaches villages via the main grid, the policy entails provision for co-functioning of the mini grid along with the main grid. The policy is definitely a first of its kind to give due credit to the mini-grid business developers. Once the main grid reaches the mini-grid, the community can decide to operate the mini-grid parallel to the maid grid, or sell the excess/all power to the utility. They also have an option of transferring the project to the DISCOMs or work in a franchisee model.

Opportunities of Cogeneration

There are eleven sugar mills in Nepal crushing approximately three million tons of cane annually. All the mills are equipped with bagasse cogeneration plants for captive electricity and steam needs. Through updates of their captive plants. Nepal’s sugar mills could generate significant surplus power during dry season when power generation from hydropower projects is running low. Even the quickly available potential from the ‘incidental’ option at 20,750 MWh/year is more than double NEA’s current thermal generation and would require only little additional investment. The ‘high efficiency’ option could contribute as much as 18 % of hydropower generation during the dry season (up to 257,886 MWh/year ).


Most of the turbines used in Nepal are medium or high head turbines. These types of turbines are efficient but limited for rivers and streams in the mountain and hilly region which have considerably high head. Low head turbines should be used in the plain region if energy is to be extracted from the water sources there. This helps in the rural electrification and decentralized units in community, reducing the cost of construction of national grid and also to its dependency, in already aggravated crisis Situations. The hilly and the mountainous regions of Nepal have streams and rivers with high head, so most of the research and study works has been limited to the development of the efficient high head turbines in these regions. Enough study and research has not been done for the development of the turbines and micro hydro plants for the Terai region where the head is considerably low but the discharge is quite high. Until now, we have been discarding the huge water potential of the Terai.

In my opinion government should solarize all the public buildings of state, this will create huge employment. They should promote use of E-rickshaw in city of Terai. We should gofor decentralized model i.e distributed generation.

Er. Ashutosh Aananda Jha

Electrical Engineer

Sagar Bhatta


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