Zambia will experience 400 megawatts of electricity deficit between now and the remainder of the year due to a drop in water levels at one of its major hydro power plants, the Times of Zambia reported on Friday.
The low water levels caused by poor rains in the Kariba Dam will result in the Kariba North Bank Power Station generation capacity dropping by 400 megawatts.
Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water Development Emelda Chola said water levels in the Kariba Dam had dropped forcing the Zambezi River Authority (ZRA), an institution that manages the dam, to ration the allocation of the resource for power generation by 10 percent.
The official said water levels have dropped from 45 billion to 33 billion cubic liters rendering power generation activities below normal, a move that would result in increased power cuts.
“There will be a reduction in power supply to domestic and commercial users this year owing to lower power generation from Kariba after poor rainfall,” she was quoted as saying by the paper.
Normal electricity generation was only expected to resume after the onset of the 2015/2016 rainy season, she added.
While revealing that the country’s power utility was implementing interim measures to control the situation, the official said the government has laid out long-term strategies to boost the country’s electricity reserves such as diversifying energy sources.
According to government figures, Zambia’s electricity generation lies between 1,730 megawatts and 1,820 megawatts. Enditem