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Hydropower News

Egypt, Ethiopia leaders to meet in coming days over GERD dam

By: Bloomberg     22nd October 2019 Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed will meet President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi of Egypt to discuss a 5 150 MW dam that has strained relations between the two nations over access to water. Egypt is concerned that the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam being built 3 200 km upstream will restrict the... 

South Africa to test market for emergency power ‘gap fillers’ as IRP is finalised   

By: Terence Creamer     18th October 2019 South Africa will release a request for information (RFI) in the coming weeks to test the market for solutions to close an immediate electricity supply gap of between 2 000 MW and 3 000 MW, which has emerged primarily as a result of a fall in the energy availability factor (EAF) from Eskom’s coal... 

South Africa to test market for emergency power ‘gap fillers’ as IRP is finalised
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe on the Integrated Resource Plan 2019 allocations and the need for short-term supply solutions. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 18.10.2019

Egypt denounces Ethiopia for moving ahead with Nile dam amid water-shortage fears

By: Reuters     10th October 2019 Egypt denounced Ethiopia on Wednesday for moving forward with building and operating a hyropower dam on the Nile, which Cairo worries will threaten already scarce water supplies. Ethiopia, the source of the Blue Nile which joins the White Nile in Khartoum and runs on to Egypt, says the dam will... 

Egypt denounces Ethiopia for moving ahead with Nile dam amid water-shortage fears

Plans to speed up electrification in Africa

By: Kim Cloete     10th October 2019 Africa needs to connect around 73-million people to electricity every year to reach the goal of affordable and sustainable energy for every single African by 2030, says the African Union (AU) Commission. Atef Marzouk, head of the Energy Division of the AU Commission’s Department of Infrastructure... 

Egypt urges international mediation over Nile river deadlock

By: African News Agency      7th October 2019 Seven years of talks between Egypt and Ethiopia in Sudan over a massive dam construction on the Nile river have reached a deadlock with Cairo appealing to the international community to intervene. Ethiopia began constructing the Grand Renaissance dam on the Blue Nile in 2012 saying the... 

Ethiopia dam official blames construction delays on conglomerate METEC

By: Reuters     1st October 2019 Construction of a $4-billion dam at the heart of Ethiopia's bid to become Africa's biggest power exporter has been delayed five years as engineers had to replace shoddy work by a conglomerate pulled off the job last year, a project official said. The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, announced in... 

Ethiopia dam official blames construction delays on conglomerate METEC

Ethiopia rejects Egypt's plan for operating giant dam on the Nile

By: Reuters     19th September 2019 Ethiopia on Wednesday rejected a proposal by Egypt to operate a $4-billion hydropower dam the Horn of Africa country is constructing on the Nile, further deepening a dispute between the two nations over the project. In a press conference in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, Sileshi Bekele, minister... 

Uganda says its power generation capacity will jump 55% by year-end

By: Reuters     18th September 2019 Uganda's electricity generation capacity is set to jump by 55.5% in December when a Chinese-financed hydropower plant and other, smaller projects are commissioned, the east African country's energy minister said. In recent years, Uganda has been wooing private-sector energy investors and taking... 

Zambia may import 300 MW of power from South Africa, prices could double – minister

By: Reuters     17th September 2019 Zambia is in talks with South African power utility Eskom to import 300 MW of electricity, Energy Minister Mathew Nkhuwa said on Tuesday, adding that retail prices could double once imports begin. Zambia has a power deficit of more than 750 MW because of low water levels at hydropower dams,... 

Egypt and Ethiopia at odds as talks over Blue Nile dam resume

By: Reuters     17th September 2019 Egypt says Ethiopia has "summarily rejected" its plan for key aspects of operating a giant dam the East African nation is building on the Nile, while dismissing Ethiopia's own proposal as "unfair and inequitable". The comments in a note circulated to diplomats last week show the gap between the... 

Egypt and Ethiopia at odds as talks over Blue Nile dam resume
Photo by Reuters
The Nile river in Egypt

Ghana power producers say plan to save costs carries hefty bill

By: Bloomberg     16th September 2019 Ghana’s plans to stop paying for power that it doesn’t consume may cost the country as much as $2-billion in upfront claims. Private operators will not accept Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta’s proposal to renegotiate agreements and will demand the full payment of their contracts’ termination... 

Uganda seeks $3.5bn in private money for power transmission

By: Bloomberg     10th September 2019 Uganda is seeking $3.5-billion in private investment to expand its power-transmission network in attempt to curb spending without slowing its economic growth. Liberalizing transmission will provide additional resources needed to transmit power from new generation projects including the 600 MW... 

Uganda rejects planned power plant at Murchison Falls

By: Reuters     28th August 2019 Uganda said on Wednesday that due to the importance of its famed Murchison Falls as a lucrative tourism attraction it had rejected a hydropower project proposed by South Africa's Bonang Power and Energy. The falls lend their name to a 3 900 km2 national park, one of Uganda's biggest, where... 

Zambia mulls a Congo canal. Experts say don’t even try it

By: Bloomberg     23rd August 2019 Drought-riven Zambia plans to build canals from the Congo river in its northern neighbor to supply water and electricity. It will never work, say experts. Water levels have plunged for the second time in three years in the Kariba dam, which feeds off the Zambezi river and provides both Zambia and... 

Power-starved Zimbabwe, Zambia face further drought-induced dark

By: Bloomberg     6th August 2019 The Kariba dam that straddles Zambia and Zimbabwe, the world’s biggest man-made reservoir, is emptying fast, sparking fears the countries may have to cut hydropower production there completely. For the two southern African nations already suffering daily blackouts and growing economic pressures... 

Three Gorges has nothing on China-backed dam to power Africa 

By: Bloomberg     6th August 2019 A dream of building the world’s biggest hydroelectric project in the heart of Africa may be inching closer to reality. For decades, plans have been made and discarded to construct a series of hydroelectric power stations on the world’s second-longest river that would generate almost twice the... 

Three Gorges has nothing on China-backed dam to power Africa

Respected head of IPP Office, Breytenbach, asked to leave post

By: Terence Creamer     22nd July 2019 The respected head of South Africa’s Independent Power Producer (IPP) Office, Karen Breytenbach, has confirmed to Engineering News Online that she has been asked to vacate her position by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA). News of her departure was... 

Respected head of IPP Office, Breytenbach, asked to leave post
Photo by Creamer Media's Dylan Slater
Karen Breytenbach

ResponsAbility teams up with Southern African hydropower project developer

By: Simone Liedtke     4th July 2019 A responsAbility-managed energy holding company has acquired a 26% interest in Renewable Energy Holdings (REH), the owner and operator of run-of-river hydropower projects in Southern Africa. 

Zambia, Zimbabwe to start building Batoka power plant next year

By: Reuters     2nd July 2019 Zambia and Zimbabwe will start building the 2 400 MW Batoka Gorge hydropower plant next year, a company jointly owned by the two governments said on Tuesday. The Batoka project involves construction of a dam, powerhouses, roads, transmission infrastructure and houses in both Zambia and Zimbabwe,... 

Conco wins eSwatini solar power project

By: Reuters     28th June 2019 South Africa's Consolidated Infrastructure Group (Conco) has won a $16-million contract to build a 10 MW solar project, in eSwatini, the firm said late on Thursday. The kingdom, formerly known as Swaziland, imports 80% of its electricity from South Africa's troubled utility Eskom but is looking... 

Collaboration ensures reliable energy solutions for water pumpstations

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     28th June 2019 With pumpstations requiring prime power from the grid or reliable back-up power to ensure continuous water flow, power solutions manufacturer Himoinsa works closely with water contractors and consultants to deliver the best solution for a pumpstation. “Whether it’s prime or continuous running, we... 

Collaboration ensures reliable energy solutions for water pumpstations
FORWARD THINKING Himoinsa is investing in research and development, and has launched several products that will effectively integrate with hybrid power solutions

Zambia directs State power firm to take cost-cutting measures

By: Reuters     27th June 2019 Zambia's Zesco should freeze staff hiring, merge some of its departments and take other steps to cut costs and make the State power utility more efficient, a government body said. The government said in November it had started implementing measures to transform Zesco, which does not have enough... 

Wild weather is endangering world's oldest form of clean power

By: Bloomberg     24th June 2019 The Kariba Dam has towered over one of Africa’s mightiest rivers for 60 years, forming the world’s largest reservoir and providing reliable electricity to Zambia and Zimbabwe. But as drought grips the region, flow on the Zambezi river has dwindled to a third of what it was a year ago. Last month,... 

GE wins bid to build $4bn Zambia-Zimbabwe hydropower plant

By: Bloomberg     21st June 2019 Zimbabwe and Zambia chose General Electric (GE) and Power Construction Corporation of China to build a $4-billion hydropower project straddling their border, Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa said. The 2 400 MW Batoka Gorge plant has been planned for years by the two southern African... 

Kenya slashes 2030 power production targets as use still low – media

By: Reuters     20th June 2019 Kenya has cut its target for expanding its electricity output by 2030 by nearly 30% as demand is growing more slowly than expected, its energy minister was quoted as saying. The country now plans to add 7 200 MW of installed electricity capacity to its grid by 2030, down from an original target... 

Kenya slashes 2030 power production targets as use still low – media

Drought leaves key African hydro dam less than a third full

By: Bloomberg     18th June 2019 A regional drought has reduced water levels at Kariba Dam, the main source of power for Zambia and Zimbabwe, to less than a third of its capacity. The dam is only 29% full, compared with 88% a year ago and 31% at the start of June, the Zambezi River Authority said in an emailed statement on... 

Ugandan critics oppose Nile river power plant plan

By: Reuters     11th June 2019 A plan by South Africa's Bonang Power and Energy to develop a 360 MW power plant on Uganda's River Nile has met resistance from critics who say the project will destroy the popular tourist attraction of Murchison Falls. Located on the Nile between the Ugandan lakes Kyoga and Albert, the Murchison... 

eSwatini calls for solar power bids to ease reliance on South Africa's Eskom

By: Reuters     11th June 2019 The kingdom of eSwatini has called for bids to build 40 MW of solar power capacity to reduce reliance on South Africa's troubled state power firm Eskom. The kingdom, formerly known as Swaziland, imports 80% of its electricity from South Africa, where the cash-strapped national supplier has... 

Zimbabwe says mines can pay for power in foreign currency to secure supply

By: Reuters     31st May 2019 Zimbabwe mining companies can pay for electricity in foreign currency to guarantee supplies, the energy minister said on Friday, a day after he indicated there could be deeper power cuts in the country due to low dam water levels. Fortune Chasi said on Thursday the country's largest hydroelectric... 

Zimbabwe power cuts may deepen as water levels fall at Kariba Dam 

By: Reuters     30th May 2019 Zimbabwe's largest hydroelectric plant, Kariba Dam, will suspend output in 14 weeks if water levels continue to fall at the current rate, the energy minister said on Thursday, paving the way for deeper power cuts in the country. The Southern African nation has endured its worst rolling power cuts... 

Zimbabwe power cuts may deepen as water levels fall at Kariba Dam

Hidroeléctrica de Cahora Bassa announces IPO

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     22nd May 2019 Hidroeléctrica de Cahora Bassa (HCB), the Mozambican concessionaire of the Cahora Bassa hydroelectric plant, has announced the launch of its initial public offering (IPO) for up to 7.5% of its shares to individual Mozambican nationals and collective national investors. The IPO will see a first... 

Pioneers and projects that shone at African Power, Energy & Water Industry Awards

By: Kim Cloete     17th May 2019 A dynamic South African leader in renewable energy, a former influential government minister in Ethiopia, the Ghana Grid Company and a range of renewable energy projects were among the winners at the annual African Power, Energy & Water Industry Awards announced in Cape Town this week. The... 

Power Africa moves towards its goal of bringing more energy to the continent

By: Kim Cloete     16th May 2019 Power Africa, which was launched by former US President Barack Obama six years ago, is working towards its target of providing energy access to an additional 60-million new homes and businesses and adding 30 000 MW of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity on the African... 

Mozambique power utility begins the long process of recovery following cyclones

By: Kim Cloete     15th May 2019 Mozambique’s energy sector is trying to get back on track following the devastation wreaked on its power system by Cyclone Idai in March and cyclone Kenneth in April.   Electricity Company of Mozambique chairperson and CEO Aly Impija told delegates attending the African Utility Week, in Cape... 

Zimbabwe starts rolling power cuts, hitting mines, industry

By: Reuters     13th May 2019 Zimbabwe has started rolling power cuts lasting up to eight hours that will also hit mines, a schedule from the State power utility showed on Monday, after reduced output at both the largest hydropower plant and ageing coal-fired generators. The power cuts will add to mounting public anger... 

IEA says world cannot ‘press pause’ on renewables, as capacity growth stalls  

By: Terence Creamer     6th May 2019 The International Energy Agency has expressed concern over the “unexpected flattening” of renewable-energy capacity additions in 2018, which, at 180 GW, remained in line with additions recorded in 2017. It was the first time since 2001 that year-on-year additions of renewable energy failed to... 

IEA says world cannot ‘press pause’ on renewables, as capacity growth stalls

Company to focus on hydropower at AUW

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     3rd May 2019 South Africa-based independent power producer Renewable Energy Holdings (REH) aims to focus on the role hydropower plays in the Southern Africa power sector at this year’s African Utility Week (AUW). “Hydropower is a very stable resource to add to the grid, especilly when compared with solar... 

Company to focus on  hydropower at AUW
STABILITY Hydropower is a very stable resource to add to the grid compared to solar power
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