Construction International News - February 2013

India To Build 200 New Dams

Posted by Paul Fiddian - Construction International Reporter on 12/02/2013 - 11:15:00

200 Dams Plan

200 new dams are going to be built along one of Asia's major rivers, the Brahmaputra.

1,800 miles long, the Brahmaputra River runs from Tibet to India, passing through China and Bangladesh along the way.

In April 2010, China announced it was constructing a massive new dam on the Brahmaputra, which is scheduled to be finished in 2015. This - the Zangmu Dam - is one element of the Zangmu Hydropower Project, backing up a 510 MW power station.

Since then, China's approved the construction of three more Brahmaputra dams but, now, India's moving ahead with the build of no less than 200, in various sizes. A large number of these dams will be placed on the Brahmaputra's Lohit, Subansiri and Dibang tributaries.

New Indian Dams

Two of the largest members of the new Indian dams group will be the 520 MW Teesta-IV Hydroelectric Project and the 800 MW Tawang-II Hydroelectric Project, located in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh, respectively. Each of these builds will be carried out by NHPC - the National Hydroelectric Power Corporation.

The official go-ahead for India's massive new Brahmaputra dams construction programme was supplied by the Ministry of Environment and Forest's FAC (Forest Advisory Committee) division.

200 Indian Dams

It's not entirely clear how long all 200 Indian dams will take to be built but the Tawang-II Hydroelectric Project's been given a five-year construction timeframe.

"India has for a long time been aware of the Zangmu Dam", an unnamed official told the Indo-Asian News Service. "We have seen Google Earth images and have got information from our agencies about ongoing dam construction."

China's Zangmu Dam has proved a controversial topic in India. Set to stand more than 100 metres tall, it will stream water to the drier parts of China but effectively dry up Assam - in the North of India - during the warmest months of the year.

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