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High Human and Environmental Cost
of Hydel Projects
|by Sujata C|
Yesterday’s glacier burst in Uttarakhand was an ‘I-told-you-so’ moment for environmentalists.
The construction of the Tapovan project began in 2006 on the Dhauliganaga river in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand, unmindful of protests from local residents and environmentalists. Power production from the plant was expected to begin in 2012, but the target was missed as the tunnel work was not moving as per plans. The head race tunnel; as it is called is 12 kilometres long. Drilling, boring and blasting methods were employed to make this tunnel in the mountainous terrain. Common sense tells that it will have an adverse impact on the ecosystem, but try telling this to any civil engineer. As the work was proceeding, locals complained that the area is sinking due to the tunnelling work and drying up their water resources, but their protests fell on deaf ears.
Ominously in 2013 ten days flood fury in Kedarnath flash floods completely washed away the diversion tunnel of Tapovan project along with the under-construction cofferdam. Approach road to the silt flushing tunnel was also damaged. But nothing deters some people nor do they pay any heed to the warnings of Mother Nature.
Images courtesy of India Today and Times of India
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02/08/2021 07:54 AM
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