Hydro Power in Rwanda


 

Over the last decade, Rwanda’s hydropower sector showed a tremendous progress. Overall installed capacity of power is about 210MW, hydropower contributing approximately 50% of it.

This was achieved by involving private investors in the energy sector; Independent Power Producers (IPPs). Equally contributed to achievement in energy sector is a conducive legal and regulatory environment for private investors in this area.

Grid connected hydropower plants

21 hydropower plants are grid connected and account to 98.93MW. They included national and shared regional Rusizi I&II HPPs.  Hydropower makes up approx. 50% of the total installed capacity.

Hydro plants are publicly owned and operated, leased to private companies, or privately owned (IPP). The publicly owned power plants are managed by the national utility REG/EUCL. They include larger plants such as Ntaruka, Mukungwa and Nyabarongo I, with a total capacity of about 67 MW. Independent power producers own and operate 5 plants (10 MW). Other 8 power plants (13 MW) are privately operated through 25 years leasing agreements with the GoR,.

NYABARONGO II Project

The Nyabarongo II Multipurpose Project is designed to construct a dam across Nyabarongo River downstream of Nyabarongo I Hydro-Electric Power Plant to purposely utilize the flow of Nyabarongo and Akanyaru rivers for power generation (128 MW) as follows: Shyoring Dam Hydro-Electric Power Project of 37.5 MW, Butamwa Pump Storage Hydro-Electric Power Project of 40 MW, Juru Pump Storage Hydro-Electric Power Project of 40 MW, and Lake Sake Outlet Hydro-Electric Power Plant of 10.5 MW.

Apart from the Hydropower component which will largely boost existing installed capacity, the project will also contribute to irrigation systems and increase level of water supply to Kigali and Bugesera residents and industries.

The Feasibility Studies for the project development are completed and its development/implementation is under consultations.

 Off-grid micro hydropower plants

Currently, 11 micro hydropower plants MW exist in Rwanda as isolated networks. These plants were originally developed by the GoR, and handed over to private sector management to increase the private sector contribution in energy generation. GoR has recently leased out these sites to private investor to better operate, upgrade and connect them to the grid. There is also pico hydropower plants in the range of 1-10 kW which are either publicly owned and operated by the local communities or entirely private.

By December 2016, 7 privately developed hydropower plants with a total capacity of 16 MW were under different phases of construction, with commercial operation dates (COD) planned in 2019.

Some 43 hydropower projects are at different stages of development by the private people/firms with a total capacity of about 53 MW. Of these, 14 hydropower projects with a total capacity of 26 MW have seen their concession agreement approved by the GoR by June 2016. Other 32 projects with a total capacity of about 30 MW are at early stage of development. We have also 40 smaller sites (9.2 MW in total) feasibility studies have been conducted on behalf of REG.

About 30 companies, both local and international companies were involved in hydropower projects development in Rwanda. The total investment volume for the 18-private sector driven hydropower plants in construction and advanced development stage (39 MW) can be estimated at about 150 Mio USD.

 

 

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