Zimbabwe policy to encourage mini-hydro

Zimbabwe has initiated a policy that all new dams be designed in a way that allows mini-hydropower generation to be developed at the sites, an official says.

Zimbabwe’s Herald reported Energy and Power Development Minister Mike Nyambuya told a pre-budget seminar in Bulawayo that the policy is to improve local electricity generation. He said the move would complement generation from big power plants and would help save foreign currency.

Nyambuya said seven mini-hydro projects have been built in the Eastern Highlands with capacities ranging from 8 kW to 700 kW. He said another 1.4-MW project is being built at Manyuchi Dam in Mwenezi District of Masvingo. (HNN 11/29/06)

The minister said 620-MW Kariba South on the Zambezi River is generally running smoothly, but no longer generating at full capacity due to reduced water levels in Lake Kariba. (HNN 8/9/06)

Nyambuya said efforts to increase self-sufficiency in power generation include a plan to expand Kariba South by 300 MW. In the long term, the government also is pursuing development of the 1,600-MW Batoka Gorge project on the Zambezi. (HNN 6/12/07)

He said the government also hopes to refurbish and develop additional thermal generation.

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