Bhutan's Hydro project assisted by India wins prestigious Brunel Medal

Bhutan's Hydro project assisted by India wins prestigious Brunel Medal
Image Courtesy: devdiscourse.com

Gangtok, October 23: The Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project in Bhutan, which was assisted by India has won the prestigious Brunel Medal for excellence in civil engineering conferred by the UK-based Institute of Civil Engineers. The Mangdechhu hydroelectric project (HEPP) is a 720MW run-of-river power plant built on the Mangdechhu River in Trongsa Dzongkhag District, Central Bhutan. The Mangdechhu project was funded by India by a 70 per cent loan and a 30 per cent grant and was developed by the Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project Authority, which was collectively created by the Indian and the Bhutanese governments.

The Brunel Medal is awarded to teams, individuals, or organizations operating within the built environment and recognizes excellence in civil engineering. The medal is conferred by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) is an independent professional association for civil engineers and a charitable body in the United Kingdom, and makes a series of awards to recognize the work of its members.

The run-of-river power plant that is Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project’s construction began in 2012 and took a record time of seven years to finish and was built at a cost of Rs. 4,500 crore, and later on August 17, 2019, was inaugurated by the Bhutanese Prime Minister  Lotay Tshering and Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Bhutan, hence it is seen as a representation of friendship between India and Bhutan. 

The Mangdechhu Project earned a return of Rs./Nu. 1300 crores within one year of commissioning, which has surpassed the projected target of Rs/Nu 1200 crores. All four units of the project are running at full capacity and generating 18.7 Million Units/day at 779 MW since August 2, 2020. The electricity generated by the Mangdechhu Hydroelectric Project adheres to the energy requirements of Bhutan and the surplus electricity is exported to India.