Ethiopia to start power generation from Nile Dam on Sunday

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) has been at the center of regional conflict for over a decade.

Ethiopia will start generating electricity from the Blue Nile megadam on Sunday, government officials told AFP, a major milestone in the controversial project.

The Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), Africa’s largest hydropower program, has been at the center of regional conflict since the inauguration of Ethiopia in 2011.

“Tomorrow will be the dam’s first energy production,” an Ethiopian government official said on Saturday.

A second employee confirmed the information. Since the development has not been officially announced, both parties spoke on condition of anonymity.

Egypt and Sudan, which are adjacent to the lower reaches of Ethiopia, consider dams a threat because they depend on the Nile. Addis Ababa, on the other hand, believes it is essential to the electrification and development of dams.

Since the start of work, there has been no immediate response from Cairo or Khartoum, which is pressing Ethiopia to sign a binding agreement on dam filling and operation.

The three governments held multiple consultations. But so far, there are no signs of a breakthrough.

The $ 4.2 billion (€ 3.7 billion) project is expected to ultimately produce more than 5,000 MW and more than double Ethiopia’s electricity output.

Ethiopian Dam is 145 meters (475 feet) high

The height of Ethiopian Dam is 145 meters (475 feet).

Ethiopia initially planned an output of about 6,500 MW, but later lowered its target.

“The newly generated electricity from GERD could help revive a devastated economy with the combined forces of deadly war. Fuel price COVID-19 Pandemic. “

The story that failed

The 145-meter (475-foot) dam is located on the Blue Nile River in the Benishangrugums region of western Ethiopia, not far from the border with Sudan.

Egypt, which relies on the Nile for about 97% of its irrigation and drinking water, sees dams as an existential threat.

Sudan wants the project to regulate annual floods, but fears that its dam could be damaged without an agreement on the operation of GERD.

African Union (AU) -sponsored talks did not reach a three-way agreement on dam filling and operation, and Cairo and Khartoum will stop filling large reservoirs in Addis Ababa until such an agreement is reached. I requested.

However, Ethiopian officials claim that filling is a natural part of the dam’s construction process and cannot be stopped.

Map of East Africa showing the Nile and the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam

A map of East Africa showing the Nile and the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.

The UN Security Council met last July to discuss the project, but Ethiopia later denounced the session as a “useless” distraction from an AU-led process.

In September, the Security Council adopted a statement encouraging Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan to resume negotiations under the auspices of the AU.

Egypt claims historic rights to the Nile from the 1929 Convention, which gave veto rights to riverside construction projects.

The 1959 treaty raised Egypt’s quota to about 66% of river flow and Sudan to 22%.

However, Ethiopia is not a party to those treaties and does not consider them valid.

The process of filling GERD’s vast reservoir began in 2020, and Ethiopia announced in July of that year that it had achieved its 4.9 billion cubic meter target.

The total capacity of the reservoir is 74 billion cubic meters and the goal for 2021 was to add 13.5 billion.

Last July, Ethiopia said it had achieved that goal. This meant that there was enough water to start producing energy, but some experts questioned this claim.

Ethiopia Achieves Second Year Goal to Fill Nile Megadam

© 2022 AFP

Quote: Ethiopia will start power generation from Nile Dam Sunday (February 20, 2022) Obtained from on February 20, 2022

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Ethiopia to start power generation from Nile Dam on Sunday

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