Power crisis in Tanzania

The Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) said that water levels are decreasing at the country's hydro power plants, leaving the country to face a 133MW power deficit in its national grid.

The levels at Tanzania's largest hydroelectric dam, Mtera – between Dodoma and Iringa –  have dropped to 691.36 metres above sea level, which is just 1.36 metres above the level required to generate electricity. If there is not significant rainfall soon it will cease to produce electricity by August and the facility will be closed.

The power crisis is predicted to stabilise somewhat in early June with the addition of 100MW to the national grid upon completion of the TANESCO-owned Jacobson gas plant in the Ubungo area of Dar es Salaam. The plant is being built by Norwegian firm Jacobsen Elektro AS and is owned by TANESCO.

Also Symbion Power – the US-based company contracted by TANESCO to produce and supply electricity – has said its 50MW power plant in Arusha will become operational by the end of May. The plant is part of Tanzania’s public-private partnership drive to increase the amount of electricity in the national grid.
Symbion has also constructed power plants in Dodoma and Arusha, capable of producing a total of 105MW. Both plants will become available to TANESCO later on in the year, to coincide with expected low water levels at Mtera.