E-flow Phase II: 2nd Project Steering Committee meeting
November 23, 2020
The Water Resources Coordination Division conducted the 2nd Project Steering Committee (PSC) meeting for the project ‘Study on Minimum Environmental Flow for Hydropower Projects in Bhutan – Phase II’ on November 20, 2020. Phase II of the project is funded by the Austrian Development Agency and is implemented by the National Environment Commission Secretariat in collaboration with key stakeholders, from November 2019 to April 2022.
Phase II builds on Phase I of the project implemented between November 2014 and March 2019 (also funded by the ADA) during which the guideline for determination of E-Flow was developed; five sites were assessed using the guideline; and capacity of the key agencies and institutions to determine E-Flow was built. Phase II aims at institutionalization of E-Flow assessment and monitoring through development of a module for integration into the existing curricula of institutes; integration of the E-Flow guideline into the hydropower detailed project report and guidelines; and development of guideline for beyond run of the river hydropower schemes.
The PSC meeting was chaired by the Hon’ble Secretary of the National Environment Commission Secretariat (NECS) and attended by the Head of the Austrian Coordination Office (ACO) and officials from the Gross National Happiness Commission Secretariat, ACO and NECS.
During the meeting, the work plan and budget plan for the Fiscal Year 2020-2021 was presented and endorsed. An update of the project activities was provided and adaptation of the upcoming activities in light of the Covid-19 situation was discussed. The meeting also served as an opportunity to welcome Mr. Gerhard Adam, the new Head of ACO to Bhutan, and acquaint him with the NECS team.
Prior to the PSC meeting, ACO also had a one-on-one discussion with the Project Management Unit during which the project activities were deliberated upon in detail.
The PSC meeting is held biannually and ensures that the project is progressing effectively and the outputs are achieved.