Ethiopia to build 3 new dams on Nile tributaries


The Ethiopian government is to undertake another feasibility study on one of the major tributaries of the Blue Nile River for the construction of hydro power project that will have a potential of generating 1060 MW of electric power and two irrigation projects.
The Ministry of Water and Energy (MoWE) awarded the pre-feasibility and feasibility study of the new Tams Hydropower Project for the state-owned Water Works Design and Supervision Enterprise (WWDSE) and an Italian firm, Electro Consult (ELC), at a cost of over USD 1.5 million. The Tams Project will be situated in the Baro-Akobo River Basin, one of the tributaries of the White Nile River.
The Tams site was identified during the river basin master plan project by Tams UKG in 1999, according to the statement of WWDSE. The proposed dam site is located between the town of Bonga and the town of Gambella,  which are 449km Southwest and 766km West of Addis Ababa respectively, on the Baro-Akobo River Basin approximately 45km from the town of Gambella. Shimeles Mulugeta, Executive Officer (EO) of Business Development and Contract Management of WWDSE, told Capital that the project accomplishment period is 18 months.
According to the EO, the state enterprise and the prominent Italian engineering consultant firm have worked together before, and ELC has been supervising various hydro electric projects in the country. He cited as an example that WWDSE and ELC’s collaboration on the supervision and design of the Ethio-Kenya transmission line installation project with a German-based firm. ELC has also undertaken the feasibility study of the dam project for Wolkait Sugar Project which was subcontracted to it by WWDSE.
The Italian firm has also undertaken the supervision of Gilgel Gibe II and Tana Beles hydroelectric projects, and it is also supervising the hydroelectric projects of Gibe III and Grand Renaissance Dam. The Ethiopian Electric Power Corporation (EEPCo) has also selected ELC to undertake the supervision work of the Chemoga-Yeda hydroelectric project that is expected to be constructed on the Chemoga-Yeda river, which is one of the tributaries of the Abay (Blue Nile) River.     
In another development, MoWE has awarded the feasibility and design study of two large scale irrigation projects in the Abay basin for WWDSE in a competitive bid which will cost a total of 23.2 million birr. The state-owned enterprise is currently expanding its capacity to manage several projects is expected to undertake the Upper Guder Multipurpose and Dabus irrigation projects located in the western part of the country in the Abay basin.
The Upper Guder project will include the irrigation and small-scale hydropower development studied by BCEOM in1998, a pre-feasibility study conducted under the Abay River Basin integrated development master plan. 
The area is in West Showa zone of the Oromia Regional state around the town of Guder, located 140km west of Addis is to be covered by about 6,282 hectare of irrigation land scheme and small scale hydropower that will generate 20mw.
According to the deal, the Dabus and Upper Guder feasibility projects will cost 10.1 million birr and 13.1 million birr respectively.
Shimeles told Capital that the study of Dabus  is expected to be completed within 18 months and Upper Guder in 16 months..