Power generation to increase as Kariba Dam rehabilitation ends

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By Xinhua

HARARE: Work to rehabilitate the Kariba Dam wall is expected to be completed at the end of this month, helping to boost power generation by the Zambian and Zimbabwean power utilities, the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) said Tuesday in a statement.

During the fourth quarter of 2021, ZRA requested Zambia’s power utility Zesco Limited and the Zimbabwe Power Company reduce power generation levels to six hours on a few selected dates, in a bid to facilitate coffer dam construction works under the plunge pool reshaping sub-project of the Kariba Dam Rehabilitation Project.

Regarding the load shedding of the Zimbabwe power company due to the rehabilitation, the statement said after the wall work “the utilities were expected to implement measures that would mitigate the resulting reduction in power generation levels at Kariba.”

The specific works under the pool reshaping sub-project that called for this need have since advanced and are due to be completed by Jan. 25, ZRA said.

Looking forward, ZRA said the remaining rehabilitation works would not result in the two utilities reducing generation levels at their respective Kariba power stations.

“The KDRP is scheduled to be completed by 2024 and is aimed at assuring the long-term safety and reliability of Kariba Dam,” ZRA said.

The refurbishment project, which commenced in 2017, comprises the reshaping of the plunge pool and the refurbishment of the spillway gates.

The 294-million-U.S.-dollar rehabilitation project is funded by the European Union, the World Bank, African Development Bank, the government of Sweden and ZRA on behalf of the governments of Zambia and Zimbabwe, through a combination of grants and loans.