Nepal Solar Project!

Nepal Solar Project!

From Elizabeth Viernes

I'm raising money for a solar project in Nepal to help the Chitrasen Community! Funds will go to the installation of renewable energy in efforts to improve local schools & wildlife conservation initiatives. Dhanyabad!

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This year for my birthday, I will be participating in a community project with my organization to Nepal's Chitwan National Park to install solar on the Chitrasen Tower, an off-grid wildlife observation tower and ecotourism stay in the Chitrasen Community Forest Buffer Zone of Chitwan National Park.

Chitwan National Park, located in the south-central part of Nepal, protects one of the few remaining undisturbed parts of the subtropical lowland or Terai ecosystem. Chitwan National Park was the first National Park to be established in Nepal and serves as an important refuge to the Bengal Tiger and is also home to one of the last populations of greater one-horned rhinoceros, among countless other species.

A mile-wide stretch that borders much of the circumference of Chitwan National Park is designated as a Buffer Zone, a IUCN Category VI Protected Area that aims to conserve ecosystems and habitats, together with the cultural values and traditional natural resource management systems of the local people that have lived there since before Chitwan National Park was established. The communities that live in the Buffer Zone balance normal human needs for jobs, food, and shelter with conserving the wilderness and wildlife that surrounds them.

The Chitrasen Tower was recently constructed within the Chitrasen Community Forest Buffer Zone (CCFBZ) and is managed by the local CCFBZ User Group Committee. The User Group Committee leads resource management, wildlife conservation efforts, and livelihood initiatives in the CCFBZ, and relies largely on tourism to generate funding for these activities. We will be installing a 2-3kW solar photovoltaic (PV) system on the Chitrasen Tower from start-to-finish, and this work will be done alongside local people to help provide them skills that will promote a sustainable economy within their community.

With access to clean, reliable electricity, the Chitrasen Tower will be able to power lighting, a water pump that can provide running water around the clock, a facility to charge cell-phones and camera batteries, electric fans, and external flood lights for security. This creates a safe place for tourists to observe the wildlife that the park protects and stay overnight for a fee. The income generated from the Tower will be used by the CCFBZ User Group Committee to improve the local schools in their community, support resource management and anti-poaching initiatives in the CCFBZ.

Dhanyabad for your help towards this meaningful project!

Love Always,

Liz

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