42,000-mw hydropower projects run out of steam

Hydropower projects with a combined capacity estimated by experts at about 42,000 megawatt are yet to take off in various states, denying the country the opportunity to reduce its power deficit.

These projects, most of which are in the northeast, could have proved a boon to the power sector that has been crippled by shortage of coal and gas.

Experts say the private developers are discouraged by pre-commissioning hiccups, delays in environmental clearances and agitations over ecological concerns.

Problems in securing long-term funding and high interest rates are also preventing developers from taking up big hydropower projects, they add.

“The gold rush to enter hydropower sector may be over. Banks are averse to lend to these projects since they face multiple problems,” said Anil Chalamalasetty, co-founder and chief executive officer of green energy company Greenko Group.

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