Home Institution

George Washington University

Publication Date

Fall 2012

Program Name

Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples


Hydropower, a source of renewable energy that transforms water into electricity, has great potential in Nepal. It can be used to electrify homes, increase efficiency of agriculture, and improve businesses to spur economic growth. This research will examine the current status of hydropower in Nepal and the main obstacles to its expansion. More importantly, however, is the importance on developing hydropower responsibly and ethically. Harnessing the energy and generating electricity is not enough; hydropower projects should involve their surrounding communities, affecting genders, ethnic groups, and socio-economic classes equally. This research will examine how communities are affected by hydroelectricity projects and discuss ways hydropower can be used to maximize human potential. The Tamakoshi river basin in Nepal’s Dolakha district is a dynamic region with two major operating hydropower projects, two major hydropower projects in the works, and some smaller micro-hydro systems. One particular project in the area called Khimti 1 has incorporated many principles of community development from the time of construction. For these reasons, the Tamakoshi river basin and the Khimti 1 make an interesting case study that I will use to explain the status of hydropower in Nepal and how community development can make these projects successful.


Environmental Health and Protection | Natural Resources and Conservation | Natural Resources Management and Policy | Oil, Gas, and Energy | Sustainability | Water Resource Management