Tasmanian expertise is helping grow hydropower development in Bhutan.
A 15-member delegation from the government-owned Druk Green Power Corporation is in Tasmania undertaking an intensive two-week training program at the Entura clean energy and water institute at Cambridge. The program includes courses in hydropower development, hydrology, project economics, and environmental and social safeguards, as well as business systems and leadership.
The training is funded under the Australia Awards Fellowships, administered by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The Australia Awards Fellowships aim to develop leadership, address regional development priorities, and strengthen partnerships and links between Australian organisations and partner organisations in developing countries.
Institute Director, Dr Amanda Ashworth, said the Government of Bhutan is drawing on Entura's expertise to help realise its aim of providing electricity to all households by 2020 and creating revenue through export of energy to India.
"The government of Bhutan sees the energy sector as a vital tool to improve the quality of life for Bhutanese people, and to alleviate poverty," she said. "Developing capability within Bhutan in sustainable hydropower development will provide a foundation to successfully implement the government's planned energy development projects."
Ashworth said the Sustainable energy business springboard program delivered by Entura will help develop these Fellows as future leaders in the Druk Green Power Corporation, ultimately enhancing Bhutan's hydropower capability.
The Bhutanese Fellows have spent time in classroom-based learning, but have also undertaken field trips to some of Tasmania's hydropower schemes, using Hydro Tasmania's strong asset base to provide real-world experience of theory-based studies.
Entura is Hydro Tasmania's international consulting business.