NHPC's 2,880-megawatt (MW) Dibang hydropower project in Arunachal Pradesh is expected to kick-off in the first quarter of 2022-23 "with in-hand forest and environment clearances", its Chairman and Managing Director Abhay Kumar Singh said.
The company is waiting for the financial approval of the government which is expected soon, Singh said while speaking with PTI over the phone.
He added that after the approval, NHPC will begin the execution of the ambitious project in Arunachal Pradesh at a cost of around Rs 30,000 crore.
Asked about the timeline for the project, he said, "We already have in-hand forest and environment clearances. We aim to begin the construction of the project in the coming April-June period. Clearances were accorded after the requisite due diligence and fulfilling all the statutory requirements."
Sharing further details, the CMD said the final forest clearance was issued by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) in March 2020 after the submission of a compliance report by the state government.
"It is important to mention that the Mehao Wildlife Sanctuary and Dibang Wildlife Sanctuary are located about 14 km and 35 km away from the reservoir periphery of the project, respectively.
"Hence, no part of the sanctuaries will be affected by the project," Singh said.
Instead, the project will be instrumental in bringing overall prosperity to the region in terms of infrastructure development and socioeconomic development apart from the green energy generation and flood moderation in the downstream areas of Arunachal Pradesh and Assam, the CMD said.
It will take around 108 months to construct the project, which will come up in hilly ranges against challenging weather conditions, Singh said.
Singh further said a sum of Rs 850 crore is being paid to the landowners. The entire payment process will be cleared within a week.
According to additional information shared by NHPC, its Dibang Multipurpose Project is envisaged as a storage project with flood moderation as the key objective.
The project shall generate 2,880 MW (12x240 MW) power to produce 11,223 million units (MU) of energy in a 90 per cent dependable year.
The proposed dam axis for the project is located around 1.54 km upstream of the confluence of river Ashu Pani with river Dibang, and on river Dibang in the Lower Dibang Valley District of Arunachal Pradesh.
The project envisages the construction of a 278-metre-high concrete gravity dam.
Project implementation shall be beneficial for the downstream population due to the significant flood moderation.