Ethiopia starts electricity production at Blue Nile mega-dam. The $4.2bn project is ultimately expected to double Ethiopia's electricity output, It will produce 5,000 megawatts of electricity.
Ethiopia's mega-dam project
Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed shared a video on his Twitter page on Sunday, February 20, about the country's mega-dam. Ethiopia's mega-dam has the potential to generate 5,000 megawatts of electricity on the Blue Nile. This is a milestone in the controversial multi-billion dollar project.
The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) is located in the Benishangul-Gumuz region west of the Blue Nile and is Africa's largest hydropower project, according to Phys.org. The dam is currently expected to be completed by 2024 and the project is expected to be completed.
As the second-most populous country in Africa, Ethiopia has the second-largest electricity shortage on the continent. This colossal initiative is aimed at replenishing electricity in the country and in the future. The 145-meter (475-ft) high system crosses the Blue Nile River near the border with Sudan, in the Benishangul-Gumuz region of western Ethiopia.
The project will cost $ 4.2 billion and will generate 5,000 megawatts (megawatts) of electricity or 15,759-gigawatt-hours per year, making it the largest hydropower plant on the continent, according to the project's official website. According to the local government, some electricity will be exported to neighboring countries. Only one of the 13 turbines with a capacity of 375 MW is currently operational.
Mega Dam Capabilities
In addition to generating electricity, the dam will regulate water flow in the area, improve agriculture and reduce water evaporation. The main and saddle dams will also create reservoirs with a capacity of 74 billion cubic meters. "The dam will be able to handle 19,370 cubic meters of floodwater per second, reduce the amount of sediment in Sudan by 100 million cubic meters, and also facilitate irrigation of around 500,000ha of new agricultural lands. It will also reduce approximately 40km of flooding in Sudan, upon its completion," wrote Water Technology.
The impressive dam is currently in operation with only one of its 13 turbines with a capacity of 375 MW. The next turbine will come to life in a few more months and the dam will be completed by 2024, according to Phys.org. While not as big as China's Yarlung Tsangpo dam project with a 60-gigawatt capacity, GERD looks set to fix power shortages in the future, changing the lives of many in the region.