KATHMANDU – Minister for Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, Pampha Bhusal has said the government has adopted the policy of replacing the gas cooking stoves with the electric cooktops for prioritizing the use of clean energy.
Addressing the 21st annual general meeting of Solar Electric Manufacturers Association Nepal (SEMAN) in Dhulikhel today, she said setting up of big industries consuming electricity would be encouraged. The Minister said the government has forwarded the policy of promoting electric vehicles to using electric appliances in all sectors.
The Energy Minister argued that using solar energy is more cost-effective and time-effective. “The concept of ‘one sun, one world, one grid’ has been developed of late. This will further facilitate the use of solar power,” she said, adding that although there are adequate sources of clean water in Nepal, this water has to be used for multiple purposes and there were challenges of managing it, so in this context suggested making the solar energy practical.
Minister Bhusal said the world is suffering the adverse impact due to climate change as a result of the use of traditional energy and pointed out the need of replacing it with renewable energy. She argued that it was necessary to promote the renewable energy even to fulfill the commitment made by Nepal in the UN Climate Conference COP26. Stating that the government has adopted the policy of hybrid energy system in view of the energy security, she said the goal is to incorporate 10 per cent alternative energy in this system.
According to the Energy Minister, the alternative energy sources are mainly the solar energy and wind energy. The current installed capacity in the energy system is around 2,100 megawatts electricity and as per the ’10 per cent alternative energy policy’, around 200 megawatts solar electricity can be installed.
Presently, solar energy projects have signed the power purchase agreement for 110 megawatts and around 40 megawatts solar power is being currently in operation. “We will hold discussions with neighbouring countries regarding the energy trading. There is a plan to hold consultation on distribution of electricity free of cost for irrigation purpose in Nepal itself,” Minister Bhusal said.
On the occasion, Nepal Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) Chancellor Dr Sunil Babu Shrestha suggested all stakeholders to carry out works for the promotion of solar energy. Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC) executive director Dr Madhusudan Adhikari said that it is necessary to initiate discussions regarding the government to bring a policy for harness the 92 per cent energy remaining to be utilized in Nepal.
SEMAN president Indra Khanal said solar energy has been extended to 3,000 institutions including schools and health posts, and to 961 thousand families in collaboration with the government and the private sectors. President of Nepal Agricultural Machinery Association Khoj Raj Katuwal, SEMAN former president duo Deepak Bahadur Shahi and Uttam Silwal extended their best wishes for the success of the annual general meeting.