Congo-Kinshasa: Inga III – the Giant Is Awakening

Photo retrieved from: www.earthzine.org

“Within slightly more than two years, construction work for a third dam and hydropower station should start at the Inga falls on the Congo river in the Bas-Congo province, about 230 km downstream of Kinshasa.

At least that is the Congolese government’s intention, expressed on the 17 and 18 May at a Paris conference attended by a number of potential financiers. These included the African Development Bank (AfDB), the World Bank, the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and the Agence Française de Développement (AFD).

According to the Congolese Minister of Water Resources and Electricity, Bruno Kapandji Kalala, construction works will take approximately six years. The project, the total cost of which is estimated by the AfDB at US $12 billion, would generate 4800 MW – more than half (2500 MW) of which will be sold to South Africa.

Inga III, which is the first phase of the far more ambitious Grand Inga project, is one of the New Economic Partnership for African Development’s (NEPAD) flagship projects. It will involve huge works. First of all, part of the flow will be diverted upstream of the existing Inga I (351 MW) and Inga II dams (1424 MW) to a presently dry valley which runs parallel to the Congo riverbed. Further phases would involve the construction of a dam which would entirely bar the course of the Congo River and divert most of the flow towards the Bundi valley and Inga III, whose 100 meter-high wall would enable the production of more electricity by additional turbines, up to 39,000 MW.”

Read more: All Africa

 

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