CBIA has launched the active fund raising campaign for the Namdo and Karang projects. We are investigating the feasibility of a biogas/greenhouse project for the Tapriza school. Also, discussions are ongoing with regard to purchasing an O2 concentrator for Upper Dolpa. Click on the link below to see our project video for last years project in Saldang.
Plans for May trip to Ringmo to repair the In-stream turbine are on going. Also planning for repair of existing solar panels in Chunawar and Pugmo. Namdo and Karang projects are still on schedule for September installations
This trip was bracketed by attending the Crystal Mountain Jubilee celebration in Dho, and the Saldang School 20th celebration. We were honored for our support and projects completed throughout Upper Dolpa. We were encouraged by the reliability of our previous installations. Our reputation has really grown, as have the roads in Eastern Upper Dolpa! Dolpa is facing huge challenges, and as Yarsha harvesting was dismal this season, people are looking for salvation through expanding tourism, road construction or the rumored micro hydro project for the Dho Valley. Keeping to our mission, the Namdo School is reconstructing or essentially rebuilding the school due to heavy rains that damaged the classrooms. We will expand our power unit there to match this expansion. The school now has over 120 students. We also surveyed the Samling Bon Gumba near Bhijer to install power there next spring. Lastly, we engaged Sonam Lhama (Ringmo native, recent graduate from University in KTM) to produce a video for us, to document the vanishing Yak herding lifestyle of Upper Dolpa. This will focus on a family we know from Rike that spends the summer months near Bagala pass and then move down to lower pastures in the fall. Should be great. We will plan on sending another equipment caravan to Upper Dolpa in the Spring.
Our team visited the Ringmo In-stream turbine just after the weld failure. It provided us a hands on assessment of the failure and a true corrective action pathway for May 2015. While there we visited the Tapriza school and Amchi. We hope to arrange a deal to incorporate the under utilized solar panel array next to the Amchi for use in the One Heart Birth Center. This will provide ample power. While in Saldang, the Birth Center there was direct connected to the Shelri Drukdra grid. Also we evaluated the Namdo and Karang schools for power systems to be developed and built by the Hartford students in the Connecticut Business & Industry Association's education program.
Derek and I will leave for KTM and bring over some extensions for the Ringmo turbine to let it work during low water season. Also we will bring a new charge controller for the Saldang turbine so the battery system will perform better. Additionally we will check on the systems in Chunuwar and the Ringmo Gumba to see how they are holding up. While in KTM we will test the RAM (Infinity pump) with our friends at the WWF and see if there are applications for this in the field.
After the Great Earthquake there is so much to do for Nepal. We did support an airlift of Tapriza students out of Kathmandu to return to Dolpa for Yarsha Gumba season since schools in KTM were closed by the earthquake. However, we feel it is more important then ever to continue our work in Dolpa. Dolpa is normally neglected, and with the problems associated with the earthquake, Dolpa will fall further down the priority list in government support. Therefore our projects for Namdo and Karang are going to be completed by October of 2015, and we will also take excess solar panels and put them in the Bon Temple in Ringmo. Lastly, we have decided to purchase a next generation 5 kW New Energy In-stream turbine for the Tapriza School. This will eliminate the need for wood for cooking for the 200 students that are boarded at the school throughout the acedemic year. This power will also be available when the internet comes to remote areas... it will come someday we hope!
Our trip in Spring of 2018 was a mixed bag. We/Ringmo decided to remove the damaged In-stream turbine and convert the existing unit to hybrid solar/wind unit to provide some power for the village. Systems were installed in Chharka, and Tiling this spring. Also our previous units we checked on and running very well. We completed the Crystal Mountain School upgrade evaluation and delivered steel power poles to Pugmo. Yarsha Gumba season was under full swing and with the snowy weather, our stay was limited. This spring our foundation has financially supported the following
Tinje School Saldang School Tapriza School Komas School Ku School Karang School
Namdo Primary School Crystal Mountain School Chharka Bhot Primary School Namdo Gumba School
George Schaller, Alex Matheissen (Peter's Son) Beth Wald and our team will retrace the Snow Leopard journey for about 5 weeks. In addition we will check on our three power units in Upper Dolpa, and install smaller units for the school in Komas and one at Shey Gumba. We will also check on the Chunawar power unit, and repair the turbine blades that we damaged this spring. Justin Boals will join me from New Energy. This may be a very busy, but inspiring journey! The rains have been heavy so the journey up may be challenging. We will also check on the progress on the New Prayer Wheel in Ringmo that we helped support.
It is with great sadness, we removed the Ringmo In-stream turbine. After three massive failures caused by debris and manufacturing issues, we decided to convert the existing power system to a solar/wind hybrid system that may provide some power to the village. Many people will stay thru the winter in Ringmo this season so it should help. KAA Association also did a survey of the river for a potential micro hydro site that might be done in 2022.
The Chharka schools hybrid system was installed and now operates a laptop and printer. We also completed the Crystal Mountain School power survey and are planning for a large installation there this fall. The Chunawar breaker box was repaired and the system is running and is powering the Amchi, Health post and Hotel. The steel power pole towers were delivered to Pugmo for installation this summer to replace the wooden poles.
Yarsha gumba season has just started and we witnessed the invasion of Dolpa by thousands of outsiders..amazing. Lastly the students of Hartford delivered two power units to storm ravaged Puerto Rico! Great job.