ESIA, CIA and Social Planning Studies For Upper Arun Hydroelectric Project and Ikhuwa Khola Hydropower Project Power Sector Reform and Sustainable Hydropower Development Project (PSRSHDP)


Funding Agency: World Bank
Power Sector Reform and Sustainable Hydropower Development Project (PSRSHDP)/ Upper Arun Hydroelectric Project (NEA), Nepal
Date: July 2018 – Jan 2020

Project components to be covered by this assignment includes the following:

S.NProject ComponentCapacity or Configuration1Upper Arun HEP335 MW2 Ikuwa Khola HEP 30 MW3 Transmission Line (UAHEP) 49 km 220 KV double circuit4 Transmission Line (IKHPP) 10 km 132 KV single circuit5 Access Road to UAHEP 24 km including 1.5 km Road Tunnel and bridge over Arun River6 Access Road to IKHPP 4 km7 Ancillary facilities Contractor camp, DG sets, Spoil and rock disposal area, Quarry and Borrow area, NEA staffing houses etc.

The Project. The project components to be covered under this consultancy will include Upper Arun Hydroelectric Project (UAHEP), Ikhuwa Khola Hydropower Project (IKHPP), various ancillary activities related to each hydroelectric component and transmission line from the powerhouses of UAHEP and IKHPP to the proposed substation of Koshi Corridor Transmission Line at Tumlingtar. Since, the package for access road is done by separate consultant; this consulting service shall review the ESIA/EIA report presented by the former consultant and incorporate it in this study. These are described below.

Upper Arun Hydroelectric Project (UAHEP). The UAHEP is a proposed 335 MW hydroelectric facility to be located on the Arun River in Sankhuasabha District of eastern Nepal. The proposed dam site is located in the Chepuwa Village, in a narrow gorge about 350m upstream of the Arun River’s confluence with the Chepuwa River. The proposed power plant site is located in the Hatiya Village 16 km downstream of the dam site, near the Arun River’s confluence with the Leksuwa River. The right bank of the Arun River at the proposed UAHEP site falls within the Makalu Barun Buffer Zone, which is adjacent to the Makalu Barun National Park. The proposed UAHEP dam site is therefore located at the edge of the Buffer Zone.

UAHEP salient features. The proposed UAHEP is designed to be a Peaking Run of the River (PRoR) project with gated weir across the Arun

River. Intakes on the left bank of the river are proposed to divert the design discharge of 78.8 m3/s through an intake tunnel to three underground desanding basins, a headrace tunnel of 7.8 km, surge tank, drop shaft, pressure tunnel, and ultimately to the underground powerhouse for power generation. Water would be retained for a period of a few hours only in a peaking pond and then released through the tunnel during peak hours. After power generation, water will be released back to the Arun River. Review study in 2011 suggested that the proposed UAHEP with 335 MW of installed capacity can generate total annual energy of 2598 GWh.

Ikhuwa Khola Hydropower Project (IKHPP). NEA has also proposed to develop the 30 MW IKHPP, a medium sized hydropower project, as an integral part of UAHEP. The proposed IKHPP site is located on a tributary to the Arun River approximately 8 km downstream of the proposed UAHEP powerhouse site, and 5 km upstream of the proposed Arun III Hydropower Project headworks.

Power Transmission. For the power evacuation of UAHEP, a 220 kV double circuit transmission line shall be constructed from the powerhouse to a proposed substation at Tumlingtar. Total length of the proposed transmission line is about 49 km. According to the proposed alignment, the transmission line will start from the powerhouse site of Upper Arun at Sibrung at the left bank of Arun River and immediately follows the right bank of Arun River. The transmission line will cross the Arun River to the left bank in the vicinity of the proposed dam site for Arun-3 HEP and heads towards the proposed substation of Koshi Corridor Transmission line at Tumlingtar. Power from IKHPP would meanwhile be brought up to the proposed substation site at the UAHEP powerhouse (Sibrung) through about 10km of 132kV single circuit transmission line. The 49 km transmission line connecting from power house of UAHEP to Tumlingtar is part of the Project, and should be covered in this ESIA. The Koshi Corridor transmission line will start construction soon with financing from the Indian Exim Bank. Therefore, the total length of Transmission Lines to be covered for proposed EIA/ESIA study will be approximately 10 km 132 kV single circuit line and the 49 km 220 kV double circuit line.

Ancillary works and other associated activities. Various ancillary works will be required for project implementation, including contractor camps, diesel generators for construction-stage power supply, spoil and waste rock disposal areas, borrow areas, NEA staff housing, etc. The Consultant will consult and discuss with NEA and World Bank to identify all such associated activities under the screening and scoping stage of the consultancy.

Description of actual services provided by your staff within the assignment:

The scope of work to be carried out by the consultant shall include but may not be limited to the following:

Task 1: Environmental and Social Screening and Scoping

  1. Review of all available existing information
  2. Carry out an initial site visit
  3. Develop a detailed Project description encompassing UAHEP, IKHPP, associated access roads and transmission lines
  4. Prepare a detailed Scoping Reports for EIA of UAHEP and Transmission line including substation and screening report for ESIA, CIA and other environmental and social assessment and planning studies for UAHEP, IKHPP, access roads and transmission line.

Task 2: Environmental Assessment and Planning

  1. Baseline Survey
  2. Environmental and social input into analysis of project alternatives
  3. Impact analysis
  4. Cumulative Impact Assessment
  5. Environmental and social management plan(s) (ESMPs)
  6. Assembly of draft EIA(s), ESIA, CIA and Executive Summary, including local language summary materials for public consultation
  7. Disclosure and consultations on draft studies
  8. Finalization of studies

Task 3: Social Planning

  1. Social assessment.
  2. Socioeconomic baseline.
  3. Stakeholder Analysis.
  4. Resettlement Action Plan (RAP)
  5. Vulnerable and Indigenous Peoples Development Plan.
  6. Downstream Impacts Management Plan
  7. Gender Assessment and Action Plan
  8. Benefit-sharing Action Plan.
  9. Public Health Assessment and Action Plan
  10. Public Participation and Consultation Plan (including Inter Agency Coordination).
  11. Communications Strategy and Action Plan
  12. Institutional Capacity Assessment and Strengthening
  13. GIS Analysis