The objectives of this study are: To assess the cumulative impact of commissioned, under construction and proposed hydro power projects in Alaknanda and Bhagirathi basins; To estimate the extent to which hydropower potential identified in the basins should be developed without risking stability of landforms and environment; and Restrictions, if any, that need to be placed in the development of

DEHRA DUN: The temporary suspension of work at the 330 MW Alaknanda hydropower project near Srinagar by the Uttarakhand Government this past week has evoked loud protests from the coalition partner Uttarakhand Kranti Dal (UKD) and the local people.

Work at the project was suspended by Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal

The Ministry of Environment and Forests has decided to commission studies to assess the feasibility of the hydro electric projects proposed on the rivers Bhagirathi and Alaknanda. The studies will be conducted by the Indian Institute of Technology-Roorkee and Wildlife Institute of India, Dehradun.

The Indian Himalayan Region (IHR) with its major river systems has vast potential for hydropower development. Recognizing this potential, the Government of India in its recent initiative for 50,000 MW power generation proposes to develop several hydropower projects in the IHR.

The collapse of the Coffer Dam for the 330 MW Alaknanda Hydro Power Project does not come as a surprise to observers of Uttarakhand's hydropower development programme.

Construction Debris Chokes Glacial River
D S Kunwar | TNN

Nainital: What price electricity? Alaknanda, the majestic glacial river from the high Himalayas that gives Bhagirathi its immense volume and turns it into the Ganga, is drying up in large swathes (from six to 26 km) even before it meets the Bhagirathi at Devprayag, raising deep concerns about the future of India

Both Alaknanda and Bhagirathi are glacier-fed rivers and the hydrology of these rivers is directly impacted by climate change. The rate at which the glacier is melting has to be a consideration for the running of these projects.

The debate

Nourisher of an ancient civilization, the Ganga could be gasping for its survival. Every few kilometres the water of its tributaries will be diverted to produce power. While there may not be enough flow to run the turbines, there

Planning for hydropower development needs to evolve from a project-based engineering approach to a more holistic one