KUALA LUMPUR: The construction of the Upper Padas Hydroelectric Project (UPHEP) in Tenom, Sabah, is expected to begin next year, said Energy, Green Technology and Water Deputy Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid.
His ministry together with the Energy Commission has been reviewing and assessing the implementation of appropriate methods for the construction of the project which is expected to begin operations in 2023.
“This project will meet long-term demands and will be the most
cost-effective for electricity supply in Sabah and the Federal Territory of Labuan,” he said in reply to a question from Datuk Raime Unggi (BN-Tenom) in the Dewan Rakyat, here today.
Mahdzir said, UPHEP has been identified as the most promising hydroelectric project in Sabah to supply electricity on a reliable scale for the long term.
A feasibility study carried out showed that the project with a capacity of 180 megawatts has the potential to generate 1,118 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of electricity per year.
Elaborating further, the MP for Padang Terap said the construction of UPHEP will only require a water catchment area of about 590 hectares (2.3ha/MW) unlike the Bakun hydroelectric project (2,400MW) which required up to 69,500 hectares (20ha/MW) or the Murum hydro-electric project (944MW) which needed 24,500 hectares (26ha/MW). Both projects are in Sarawak.
He said, several studies had been carried out previously in 2010 and 2013 to identify the area that will be flooded to implement the project and all aspects have been taken into account. -Bernama