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NHPC set to restart construction on 2000MW India hydro dam

Work on Subansiri hydropower project set to continue after almost two-year delay

A hydropower dam
As one of the largest hydro power plants in India, the plant will provide a big boost to the BRIC country’s hydropower sector if construction resumes

India’s National Hydroelectric Power Corporation has been given permission from the government to restart construction on delayed 2000MW hydropower project in the BRIC country. The Subansiri project, which will be one of the biggest hydropower plants in India, has been given approval from the government following a two-year delay in construction. 

Anti-dam activists stopped building work in December 2011. A report in 2012 also issued concerns about the flood control for the dam. But the NHPC has now agreed to restart the project, following changes suggested from a committee report submitted in June.

According to reports, a dam design review panel, constituted in December 2012, submitted a report in June this year to restart work on the dam. Minister of state of power Jyotraditya Scindia has said the report has been “accepted” and the NHPC has been directed to “take the project forward,” reports have said.

Hydro capacity

Located on the Lower Subansiri River in the Southwestern states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, the Subansiri Project will have a reservoir capacity of 1.37KM. French firm Alstom will provide power generation equipment for the project. This includes eight 250MW vertical shaft Francis turbine generators, all combined to have a potential power capacity of 2000MW. The Alstom Vadodara unit has also manaufactured the largest Francis Runner in India for the project. The plant will be more powerful than TCDC India’s 1000MW hydropower plant located on the Bhagirathi river.  That plant will start operating in 2016.