Towards Sustainable Small Hydro Power Development in Himachal Pradesh, India

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Long considered to be a non-polluting and renewable energy source, small hydroelectric power (SHP) has been promoted as an alternative approach to electrical energy production in India. In recent years the government has opened up the SHP sector to private investors, offering tax breaks and other incentives to stimulate development. Such accelerated expansion has come at a cost. In many cases development has proceeded with inadequate feasibility analysis and with a lack of consideration of the risk factors and environmental, social and economic impacts. This paper explores sustainable SHP development in India, focusing on the state of Himachal Pradesh (HP). Using publically available state government data, as well as web-based and academic literature sources, the paper presents multiple perspectives on sustainable SHP development in the state of HP. We conclude with reflections on how sustainable SHP development in India might be achieved and suggestions for future policy-making and research.

Original Citation

Grossman, M. and Rao, M.N. (2017). Towards Sustainable Small Hydro Power Development in Himachal Pradesh, India. International Journal of Global Energy Issues 40(3/4). 166-183. https://doi.org/10.1504/IJGEI.2017.10007701