World Bank funds four West Africa hydro projects

In support of a West Africa Power Pool initiative, the World Bank Board approved credits June 29 for five nations to help build one hydroelectric project and to upgrade operation of three existing projects.

59-MW Felou

The board approved US$75 million in International Development Association (IDA) credits to Mali, Mauritania, and Senegal to finance construction of the 59-MW Felou hydroelectric project on the Senegal River in Mali.

The IDA credits, of US$25 million each to Mali, Mauritania, and Senegal, are to finance design, construction, and commissioning of Felou under a fixed-price turnkey contract to be awarded by Organisation pour la Mise en Valeur du Fleuve Senegal (OMVS). OMVS, the three-nation Senegal River development organization, recently invited applications to build Felou. (HNN 4/25/06)

Based on a 2003 feasibility study, Felou is to have three bulb turbines designed for a flow of 500 cubic meters per second and a head of 14.8 meters. It is to include a 630-meter diversion channel on the left bank of the river and a three-kilometer, 225-kilovolt transmission line to Kayes station.

Part of the Senegal credit also is to finance comprehensive project cycle management services to OMVS and the agency that manages the 250-MW Manantali hydroelectric project, Societe de Gestion de l’Energie de Manantali (SOGEM). OMVS and SOGEM are to hire an engineering consulting firm to oversee design, construction, and commissioning of Felou.

The Senegal credit also will fund measures to: upgrade communication and data acquisition between the OMVS dispatching center at Manantali and the three nations’ utilities; and acquire software licenses to support scheduling of combined hydro and thermal resources of the OMVS countries.

65-MW Nangbeto, 1,062-MW Akosombo, 160-MW Kpong

The World Bank Board also approved two IDA credits totaling US$60 million to Benin and Ghana to finance emergency preparedness plans at the 65-MW Nangbeto hydro project in Benin (HNN 12/29/05) and the 1,062-MW Akosombo and 160-MW Kpong projects in Ghana.

The credits also will fund upgrades at Akosombo and Kpong and transmission system work.

Benin’s US$15 million credit will be implemented by the Benin-Togo transmission system operator Communaute d’Electricite du Benin (CEB). The funds will support: the emergency preparedness plan for Nangbeto on Benin’s Mono River; supply of supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA), energy management, and communications systems to upgrade the CEB dispatching center and substations; engineering and logistics support for West Africa’s Coastal Transmission Backbone; and technical support for West Africa Power Pool operational mitigation and security.

Ghana’s US$45 million credit will be implemented by the Volta River Authority (VRA) to finance emergency preparedness plans for Akosombo and Kpong on the Volta River and rehabilitation of cranes at Akosombo. VRA recently invited expressions of interest from consultants to develop a generation strategy study for Akosombo and Kpong.

That credit also is to finance: upgrade of Volta substations and the Akosombo and Kpong switchyards; upgrade of SCADA and meter systems of VRA substations; construction of a bulk supply point for Accra/Tema load centers; upgrade of training facilities; and technical assistance to VRA.

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