Hydel projects result in extinction of aquatic animals

Galeshwor / The aquatic creatures in the rivers and streams of Narchyang of Annapurna Rural Municipality-4 in Myagdi district have faced extinction threat in the recent time. According to locals, the aquatic animals in the rivers lack safe habitat following the ongoing construction works of hydropower projects and environmental imbalance in Narchyang along the Annapurna Trekking Route.

Different species of fish, crabs, worms and other water animals are gradually vanishing in the rivers in the recent years, the locals shared.The local residents further shared that the quality of arable land on the banks of rivers has also degraded due to environmental imbalance caused due to the extinction of the aquatic and other creatures.
The rivers and forests around Narchyang are regarded as the safe habitat for aquatic and wild animals. But, the ongoing development work for large number of hydropower projects in the rivers here has left the creatures on the verge of crisis, said Shiva Purja, an official working with environment unit of Mistrikhola Hydropower Project.
Currently, five hydel projects of 157 megawatt are under construction in Narchyang and the rivers here are the major source of water for those hydel projects.

Ward Chairman of Annapurna Rural Municipality-4 Chandra Prasad Phagami said that the different types of water animals, butterflies, plants and birds have gradually vanished from the sites with the construction of hydropower projects.Phagami said that though the hydropower projects have created job opportunities to the local residents here, they are unhappy with the degradation of natural heritages despite physical gains.

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