Reflections from the field: Baburam Paudel

August 21, 2014

Having grown up in Nepal I have seen first-hand the poverty and lack of services faced by communities here.

My belief that renewable technologies can change this is based on experience too. For the past ten years I have worked in the promotion and development of renewable energy technologies in Nepal and Afghanistan; and have witnessed these technologies alleviate energy poverty where they are used.

I am now working as Chief Technical Project Manager at Renewable World where I hope to add value by introducing innovative, economic, replicable and sustainable technologies to solve community problems.

One of our organisational aims is to create a clean loan scheme that will allow off grid communities to fund the installation of a sustainable energy source. Clean energy loan schemes are mutually beneficial to community and lending institution alike. This sort of development is a huge step forward in the provision of energy services in the developing world. It could reduce reliance on aid and fast track the provision of energy services and livelihood development, first in Nepal and also in other locations.

In order to develop these products, we will need to fully understand supply and demand, as well as communities’ ability to pay for energy and water services. This is where the technical part comes in. To collect the information needed, we are planning to install GSM enabled water meters in our hydraulic ram pump project (Hydram-IIIb). These will send real time water and energy statistics from the field to a central database over the Ncell Network. This data will show water use patterns in marginalised areas, providing valuable source of information which can be used by policy makers, banks and private institutions.

Enabling villages to take out clean loan products is a great ambition, but they also need training on how to manage the technology. This is another aspect of the work we do in Nepal.

We empower communities to take ownership of the sustainable technology and manage it themselves. Part of this process is about choosing the right equipment in the first place.

I particularly enjoy this side of our work. My previous jobs have been technical mainly and this is the first time I have had the opportunity to learn how we make the project sustainable by linking the technology with community needs, agricultural production and business. As you can see, work at Renewable World is varied and there are many different aspects to what we do. As Senior Technical Project Manager I work with all of our technical partners in Nepal, ensuring that the solutions respond to available resources and the needs of the community.

I also lead in Renewable World’s technical functional area providing strategic input, feasibility assessments, identification

of technology and suppliers, performance rating and energy output, lifecycle, maintenance, planning and implementation, capacity building, training and knowledge transfer design; and develop and deliver a portfolio of South Asian renewable energy and livelihood improvement projects. 

If you are interested in Baburam’s story and would like to learn more about our work in Nepal, visit the South Asia section of our website.