Rwanda is set to construct a new hydropower plant dubbed ‘Nyaborongo 11 Hydropower Plant’ after the government signed a deal with China’s SynoHydro to construct the development at a cost of US $214m.
The Head of Power Generation Projects Implementation at Energy Development Corporation Limited (EDCL), Théoneste Higaniro, explained that in addition to this amount, the Government will provide more money for expropriations and project management fees.
Nyaborongo 11 Hydropower Plant
The hydro power plant is expected to produce a power capacity of 43.5MW. Higaniro said that upon completion, the project will contribute to over 11.5% of the total electricity on the national grid. EDCL and SynoHydro Ltd signed an amendment to their June 6, 2018 agreement on the design, supply, construction, installation and commissioning of the plant.
A part from generating electricity, the dam will be used for flood control and paving way for irrigation systems and reclaiming land for agricultural activities downstream. The project is anticipated to create some 900 direct and indirect job opportunities Environmental Concerns
Nyabarongo I hydropower project which produces 28MW was the first phase of the project and was specifically designed for power generation purposes only. Higaniro moved to allay fears that human activities such as mining that lead to huge deposits of sand or soil in the river has reduced the water volumes thus affecting the plant’s capacity.
Théoneste Higaniro promised that REG will work with stakeholders in environmental management to minimize the impact of human activity in the River. Some 51% of Rwandan households have access to electricity, with 37% connected to the national grid and 14% to off-grid systems. Under its seven-year plan, which runs up to 2024, the Government targets 100% access to electricity.