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Hydropower Project Design Incorporating Submergence Costs

Lele, Sharad M and Norgaard, Richard B and Subramanian, DK (1988) Hydropower Project Design Incorporating Submergence Costs. In: Journal of Environmental Management, 27 (3). 307 -323.

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Submergence of land is a major impact of large hydropower projects. Such projects are often also dogged by siltation, delays in construction and heavy debt burdens-factors that are not considered in the project planning exercise. A simple constrained optimization model for the benefit~ost analysis of large hydropower projects that considers these features is proposed. The model is then applied to two sites in India. Using the potential productivity of an energy plantation on the submergible land is suggested as a reasonable approach to estimating the opportunity cost of submergence. Optimum project dimensions are calculated for various scenarios. Results indicate that the inclusion of submergence cost may lead to a substanual reduction in net present value and hence in project viability. Parameters such as project lifespan, con$truction time, discount rate and external debt burden are also of significance. The designs proposed by the planners are found to be uneconomic, whIle even the optimal design may not be viable for more typical scenarios. The concept of energy opportunity cost is useful for preliminary screening; some projects may require more detailed calculations. The optimization approach helps identify significant trade-offs between energy generation and land availability.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Environmental Management
Publisher: Elsevier science
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Elsevier science.
Keywords: Hydropower projects;extended benefit-cost analysis;submergence cost;optimization model.
Department/Centre: Division of Electrical Sciences > Computer Science & Automation
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2010 06:02
Last Modified: 19 Nov 2010 06:02
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/32273

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