Story of the development of a micro hydroelectric power plant in Soloban, a rural village in Nepal about 60 km south of Mt Everest. In 2006 the Soloban villagers build this power plant to provide the initial electrification of their homes and school. The project was funded by the Burwen Education Foundation (BEF) in Mountain View, California. Engineering design and construction management was provided by MEC Consultancy, Ltd in Kathmandu. Ang Rita Sherpa of the Himalayan Trust in Kathmandu provided advice and consultation. The villagers were led by Dorgee Sherpa in carrying in 44,000 lbs of materials & equipment from a distant airport and in building the facility. The BEF provided high level consultation.
This project is an example of successful bottom-up development in the third world. It was conceived in consultation with the village users and required an immense amount of their labor to make it a reality. This dedication created local ownership that insured the successful building of the plant and its maintenance over an extended period. It has greatly increased their quality of life.
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