The Indian state government of Jammu and Kashmir has released details of a new hydroelectric power policy focusing on generation by local power producers. It envisages creation of small and medium hydropower projects up to 10 MW, returnable to government after 35 years.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said: “Our conservative estimates suggest that we should be able to tap 250-300 MW through the new power policy.” He added that all new power projects will be subject to environmental clearance, and that the cost for returning the projects must be included in bids submitted by IPPs.

Omar said that projects of less than 2 MW would be administered by the Science and Technology Department, and that IPP projects between 2-10 MW will have to give 16 per cent free electricity to the government, including 1 per cent for local area development. Thirty percent of the power will be sold to the state government at a price determined by the State Electricity Regulatory Commission (SERC).

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