Uttarakhand Current Affairs

India’s first STP under Hybrid Annuity Mode to come up in Haridwar and Varanasi

India’s first Sewage Treatment Plant (STP) under Hybrid Annuity Mode will come up in Haridwar (Uttarakhand) and Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh).

In this regard, a tripartite agreement was signed between National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG) and state level executing agencies Uttar Pradesh Jal Nigam and Uttarakhand Pey Jal Nigam and with concessionaires.

Key Facts

The agreement is major step forward in realizing dream of Nirmal Ganga as it is first time ever in India that Hybrid Annuity-based Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode is being applied in sewerage sector. Under this agreement maintenance of project will be responsibility of concessionaire. They will be paid based on performance in phased manner. This will ensure continued performance of sewage infrastructure assets created due to better ownership, accountability and optimal performance.

 Hybrid Annuity Model

The Union Cabinet had approved to Hybrid Annuity-PPP model in January 2016 with 100% central sector funding. Under this model, development, operation and maintenance of STPs will be undertaken ba Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) created by winning bidder at local level.

As per this model, 40% of capital cost quoted will be paid on completion of construction while remaining 60% cost will be paid over life of project as annuities along with operation and maintenance cost (O&M) expenses. In this model, Annuity and O&M payments are linked to performance of STP mainly to ensure continued performance of assets created due to better accountability, ownership and optimal performance.

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Government launches SECURE Himalaya Project

The Union Government had launched SECURE Himalaya, a six-year project to ensure conservation of locally and globally significant biodiversity, land and forest resources in high Himalayan ecosystem spread over four states viz. Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Uttarakhand and Sikkim.

It was launched by Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) in association with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Key Facts

The SECURE project aims at securing livelihoods, conservation, sustainable use and restoration of high range Himalayan ecosystems. It is meant for specific landscapes including Changthang (Jammu and Kasmir), Lahaul – Pangi and Kinnaur (Himachal Pradesh), Gangotri – Govind and Darma – Byans Valley in Pithoragarh (Uttarakhand) and Kanchenjunga – Upper Teesta Valley (Sikkim).

The key focus areas of the project is protection of snow leopard and other endangered species and their habitats and also securing livelihoods of people in region and enhancing enforcement to reduce wildlife crime. Under it, enhanced enforcement efforts and monitoring will be undertaken to curb illegal trade in some medicinal and aromatic plants which are among most threatened species in these landscapes.

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