American tourists Shana K and her husband Zulhk K were in for a shock when they found there was no electricity at the Janakpur airport for over an hour. But that’s a constant reality for most Nepalese who face a severe power crisis every day. However, experts say the grim situation can change if Nepal utilises its water resources fully, notably that of the Koshi basin which can generate 37 times more energy than what Nepal annually imports from India.
“Nepal has a huge hydropower potential, thanks to plenty of available water in the Koshi basin. But till date the water resources have not been utilised,” said Shahriar Wahid, programme coordinator, Koshi basin programme of Kathmandu-based International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD).