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NEA to take lead to promote electric vehicles

  • Says will start by installing charging stations at different parts of Kathmandu in the first phase
- CHANDAN KUMAR MANDAL, Kathmandu

Oct 20, 2017-The Nepal Electricity Authority, the state-owned power utility, has said it will soon start plan charging stations at different parts of the Capital in the first phase to facilitate promotion of electric vehicles. 

Initially, such charging stations will be established near the NEA central office in Ratna Park and other suitable locations, which are yet to be fixed.NEA Spokesperson Prabal Adhikari said the proposed plan was inspired by the improving energy generation in the country and the vision to promote electric vehicles culture. 

“We will be having energy surplus from this monsoon once the Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project starts producing electricity. Similarly, there have been several power purchase agreements of about 3,500MW,” said Adhikari, adding:  “With these available resources, we will also have a situation of surplus energy. One option can be cross-border energy trade. The second option is consumption of the energy within the country. For this, promotion of electric vehicles among others can be useful in many ways.”

Upon completion in 2018, the Upper Tamakoshi Hydropower Project will be supplying 456MW to the national grid. The NEA team under the leadership of Kul Man Ghising, is working on different models to create a conducive environment for encouraging people to switch to electric vehicles. 

Besides setting up electric vehicles charging stations, the NEA has said it will also purchase electric vehicles for its offices. “Just setting up the vehicle charging stations will not be enough. We have to lead by example to promote electric vehicles in the country,” said Adhikari. 

“The government has to make some policy intervention to promote electric vehicles throughout the country. The NEA has taken the lead to encourage the public to opt electric vehicles, which is beneficial environmentally and economically,” he added.

Currently, the proposed plan is under documentation. 

The process will be stepped up after the festivals are over. The NEA is also seeking suggestions from experts for its project as the project is one of a kind in the country, officials said.The power utility’s step can also boost the recently table proposal in Parliament seeking to completely ban sell and distribution of fossil fuel-run vehicles by 2027 in the Kathmandu valley. 

The proposal, registered by Nepali Congress leader and former minister and parliamentarian Gagan Thapa, aims to impose a ban on sale of fossil fuel-run vehicles in the Valley by 2027, followed by countrywide ban by 2031. 

The proposal urges the government to promote electric vehicles by providing subsidies and effectively implement available policies that support use of electric vehicles. 

The country has already endorsed the Environment-friendly Vehicle and Transport Policy (2014) that aims to reduce green house gases emission from the transport sector and increase the share of electric vehicles up to 20 per cent by 2020. 

“The first phase of the plan will be concentrated on public awareness and urging the government to come up with favourable policies that will encourage the public to use electric vehicles. Currently, we are spending billions of rupees on petroleum product imports and polluting environment, which can be controlled largely if we go for electric vehicles,” added Adhikari. 

Published: 20-10-2017 08:56

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