Pampha Bhusal, Nepal’s minister for energy, water resources and irrigation, inaugurated the TBM operation together with the project manager. The launch marks a new phase for the construction of a 13.1-kilometre headrace tunnel, which will connect to a new surface powerhouse on the Marin River.
The available head between the intake and powerhouse will be utilised to generate approx. 30 MW of energy. Water diverted from the Sunkoshi River to the Marin River through the tunnel will be used to irrigate approx. 122,000 hectares of farmland in the districts of Dhanusha, Mahottari, Sarlahi, Rauthat and Bara in the Terai Plains.
This multi-purpose project comprises a conventional concrete diversion weir structure (barrage and under sluice bay) across the Sunkoshi River. The diverted water will be passed through a desander to remove silt, before being conveyed via the new headrace tunnel.
SMDMP will combine hydropower and irrigation benefits and has been declared a National Pride project by the Nepalese government.