In the western Himalayas, the entire village of Hamal is powered by a small hydroelectric plant on the edge of the Shalvi river. Producing 2MW per hour, the plant provides enough power to light up 100 homes at a time, ending the village’s once-endemic power cuts. Small hydro projects, producing up to 25MW per hour, have the potential to transform India’s rural communities and are being driven by companies such as Vaishnavi Consultants, which completed the Hamal project in 2014. The Indian government has said that by the end of March 2017 it hopes privately owned small hydro will be adding 7,000MW per hour to the national grid, enough to power more than a million light-bulbs, although there is little indication as to whether they are on track.
Guardian 29th Nov 2016 read more »