Kathmandu: The Alternative Agency for Energy Promotion (AEPC) and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Center for Renewable Energy Promotion in the country under the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, signed an agreement to promote renewable energy in Nepal. The agreement was signed by AEPC Executive Director, Mr.Madhusudhan Adhikari and the UNDP Resident Representative, Ms.Ayshanie Medagangoda-Labe and ADB Country Director, Mr.Mukhtor Khamudkhanov.
According to the press statement, the grant received from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the fund will be used to provide technical assistance under the grid component of the South Asia Sub-regional Economic Cooperation (SASEC) Power Extension Project. UNDP will also provide additional co-financing of $800,000 and technical support to AEPC through its Renewable Energy for Rural Livelihood (RERL) project.
AEPC Executive Director, Mr.Madhusudhan Adhikari said 30,500 additional households will have access to reliable, affordable and quality electricity.
UNDP Resident Representative Ms.Ayshanie Medagangoda-Labe added the project will help convert mini-hydro and solar mini-grids into livelihoods opportunities for the local communities with important technological upgrades being introduced.
The SASEC project is supporting rural communities to develop nine mini-hydropower sub-projects in Taplejung, Solukhumbu, Rukum East, Rukum West, Dolpa, Jumla and Mugu districts, and 10 solar mini-grids in Panchthar, Morang, Okhaldhunga, Sindhuli, Rolpa, Surkhet, Kailali, and Baitadi districts with a cumulative capacity of 4.8 MW. The SASEC program also promotes local employment generation, especially targeting women and members of marginalized communities, by skills training and providing access to electricity. The project intends to support the rural population to utilize 20% of the generated power in productive end-use applications.
ADB Country Director for Nepal, Mr.Khamudkhanov emphasized that the partnership will further strengthen the project’s efforts to bring significant benefits and improve the living standard of the community by providing affordable and reliable energy to the people of the rural areas and promoting productive use of electricity.
Source: The Republica