The water level of the new Man-made Lake for the proposed Julius Nyerere Hydroelectric Power Plant is steadily rising, reaching 126.12 meters above sea level as of now.
An official statement from the Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited (TANESCO) reveals that the ongoing construction of the dam, which was recently launched by President Samia Suluhu Hassan, has reached 80.2 Percent.
Tanzania, which has been suffering from power shading for the last four months, is also working to move into renewable sources of energy to offset future shortages just as the inadequate electricity supply is showing improvements.
Last year, the country was facing a shortage of between 200 and 300 megawatts of electricity, leading to regular power cuts and load shedding.
Addressing the problem, TANESCO has been working on auxiliary power plants of Kidatu, Ubungo and Kinyerezi that now adds 35, 45 and 50 Megawatts of power into the National grid, signalling the end of power cuts in near future.
Tanzania is experiencing a remarkable upsurge of electricity consumption from 6 to 11 percent in the last two years, due to increase in economic activities especially industrial production.
The new 2,115 Megawatts Julius Nyerere Hydropower Plant is now seen as the ultimate solution to power problems that have been facing the country for years.
Perched inside the Nyerere National Park the dam project is said to cost around USD 3 billion and is executed by Egyptian Contractors, Osman A. Osman and Company and Elsewedy Electric.
The Julius Nyerere Hydropower Project draws water from the Rufiji River.
Tanzania currently has an installed capacity of around 1,600 MW, with 48 percent of this capacity being from natural gas, 31 percent from hydropower, with the rest mostly from other fossil fuels.
The Julius Nyerere hydropower plant will see Tanzania’s installed capacity jump to about 3,700 Megawatts.
This more than double the increase in power capacity will give a much-needed boost to the economic growth in Tanzania, a country whose population averages at about 63 million people.
Once fully operational, hydropower will now become the major share of Tanzania’s installed electricity capacity.
Tanzania intends to add other smaller hydropower plants currently in the works and these are set to pump in another 600 Megawatts of electricity into the national grid.
The country has been contemplating building the giant power plant since the 1960s.
Now realized, the Julius Nyerere Hydropower Station and the adjoining Stiegler’s Gorge dam ranks at number 9 in the world when it comes to sheer size.
It is also the largest in East Africa and Third Largest on the continent.
The project’s footprint measures 100 kilometres long, 1,200 square kilometres real estate, with a depth of 134 meters (440 feet) of curved concrete reservoir, to make a man-made lake holding 34 million cubic meters of water.
Largest Man-made Hydropower Lakes in Africa
Which is the largest hydropower dam in Africa?
- 1. GERD, Ethiopia
- 2. Aswan High Dam, Egypt
- 3. Julius Nyerere Hydropower Dam,
- 4. Cahora Bassa Dam, Mozambique
- 5. Gibe III Dam, Ethiopia
- 6. Inga Dam, DR Congo
- 7. Merowe Dam, Sudan
- 8. Akosombo Dam, Ghana
- 9. Kainji Dam, Nigeria
- 10. Tekeze Dam, Ethiopia