In Russia’s far east Primorye region, officials have announced that a programme has been drawn up to construct small hydro power plants in the area, according to the RIA Novosti news agency.

The capacity of each plant will not exceed 1.5MW, and each will take a maximum of 30 months to construct. Electricity officials in Primorye believe that the construction of small hydro power plants on the region’s northern rivers will resolve local energy shortages and reduce electricity tariffs.

Meanwhile, hydro power plants in the Chechen Republic have suffered considerable damage as a result of the conflict there, according to Alexander Remezov, deputy head of Russia’s state electricity company, Unified Electricity Systems. Remezov said that equipment has been stolen or disassembled at many plants.

Several Russian companies have submitted proposals for putting the affected plants back into operation, and repair work on 185km of power transmission lines in the Republic was expected to be completed as IWP&DC went to press at the end of March 2000.