Ghana President John Agyekum Kufuor formally began construction of the 400-MW Bui hydroelectric project in a groundbreaking ceremony August 24 on Ghana’s Black Volta River.
SinoHydro Corp. of China is building the project under a US$594 million engineering-procurement-construction contract. (HNN 8/1/07) Work is to be completed in 2012.
The total US$622 million project also includes irrigation, fisheries, and tourism components. Ghana officials said the project will form the nucleus of Bui City, which they hope will transform the area in Brong Ahafo Region. The construction phase is to employ 2,900 people.
Ghana News Agency said Kufuor gave assurances implementation of Bui will be consistent with internationally accepted environmental standards and best practices. He said a comprehensive environmental monitoring and mitigation plan is incorporated in the project design.
Kufuor said the government will draw on its experience in resettling residents for the 1,062-MW Akosombo and 160-MW Kpong projects in developing its compensation plans for resettlement of about 2,000 people. (HNN 2/16/07)
The president also thanked China, which is providing US$562 million toward the project. The government of Ghana is providing US$60 million.
Kufuor also spoke of plans to build small hydro projects on the Ankobra, Pra, Tano, and White Volta rivers.
�To look ahead to the next 30 years, to forestall the current energy shortage problems that currently confront us, and in anticipation of increased population and widespread industrialization, it is hoped that planning ahead for increased energy supply will become part of the national culture,� he said.
The project includes a power station, transmission line, an irrigation project, and environmental mitigation. Bui includes a roller-compacted-concrete dam and three generating units totaling 400 MW.