Kalabagh Dam Project: Delay in Implementation
Kalabagh Dam Project: Delay in Implementation
Keywords: Electricity, Hydro power, Dams, EIA, Stakehoders participation
Relevant items: - Integrating stakeholders
- Meeting information requirements
Integrating stakeholders: The construction of Kalabagh Dam involved stakeholders of local provincial governments whom expressed their dissatisfaction towards the adverse impacts of the dam. Hence, the project is still under consideration because it has not received unanimous support.
Meeting information requirements: Construct impact assessment of the Dam has shown that the damn also has adverse impacts to environmental conditions, such as reduce in river flow of rivers downstream. It is always better to be aware of the impact ahead of time so that problems can be managed before it is too late.
Background in summary:
Shortage of electricity supply generated locally: The Water and Power Development Authority (WAPDA) and Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC) are the main producers involved in power generation, transmission and distribution of electricity. WAPDA has not been able to cope with the demand that is growing at an average rate of about 7 percent annually, resorting to load shedding due to energy shortages.
Construction of Kalabagh Dam will add more electricity generation capacity: Kalabagh Dam located Punjab province on the Indus River -- a multi-purpose hydroelectricity cum- irrigation project that could have added 2,400 MW generation capacity to the WAPDA has long been identified as a technically feasible project. So far, over one billion rupees have already been spent on the feasibility and design of this project, but consensus on the construction of this dam by the provincial governments is not forthcoming despite efforts by the Federal Government.
Adverse impacts of Kalabagh Dam: The dam reservoir will inundate fertile plains of the upstream province of North West Frontier Province (NWFP) and flood over existing infrastructure. Likewise, the two other provinces (Sindh and Balochistan) down-stream have expressed their reservations about the reduced amount and flow of water in the river which will affect availability of water after construction of dam for irrigation and other needs of the provinces.
Consensus to build the Dam could not be reached: Some of the adverse impacts associated with the dam could be reduced by lowering the height of the dam, but even this option is not acceptable to the provincial government of NWFP. Unsuccessful resolution of these conflicts have also held prospects of tapping other locations for dam on the Indus with sizeable hydroelectric potential.
Innovative approaches to reconcile the needs and concerns of the participating provinces with due consideration to environmental assessment are badly needed to break this impasse.
2 Improvement in either the environment of economic condition with no harm to the other. 2 Cost efficient.
2 Sustainable over time (not one-off) Process
Adaptability - Participation of the community
3 Location adaptability (can the project be done in other places?) 2 Participation of resource owners/users
2 Socio-cultural adaptability. 2 Partnerships between various actors (Governments, NGO, Academia, Private)
3 Level of development adaptability. 2 Degree of coordination and cooperation between government departments.
3 Style of government adaptability. 2 Ability to attract political interest/support
3 Degree of decentralization adaptability. 2 Procedures for feedback and review.
The effects of Kalabagh dam on agricultural production, such as tobacco, sugarcane and maize. Construction of the dam will raise ground water table of fertile land of Mardan-Swabi and Nowshera resulting in water-logging problem which will effect the production of export earning crops. (source: The Frontier Post article "Unacceptability of the dam" by Lt Col (R) Raees Khan Afridi
Sustainability of the project:
Meeting information requirements: The benefit of conducting environmental impact assessment is that decisions can be made on the basis of sound foundation of information that all aspects both benefiting and non-benefiting of the project has been incorporated. Without the EIA, development projects today could turn out to be an environmental disaster like projects in the early days, resulting in irreversible damage to the environment, in which mankind is still regretting until today.
Adaptability of the project to other situations:
Process of decision making and implementation:
Integrating stakeholders: It is important to incorporate all the stakeholders into the decision making process when building a dam because it helps widen the perspective of a project. The benefits are apparent but the disbenefits would remain invisible unless different interest groups with different viewpoints are involved, such as, NGOs and local communities. An EIA should be conducted before any action could be taken.