‘Hwange Power Station has outlived lifespan’

THE Hwange Power Station has outlived its lifespan which explains the country’s perennial power shortages, Economic Planning and Investment Promotion minister Tapiwa Mashakada said on Wednesday.

Report by Nduduzo Tshuma Staff Reporter

Speaking at the Bulawayo Publicity Association’s 80th annual general meeting at a Bulawayo hotel, Mashakada said the country was producing only 1 100 mega- watts of electricity against a demand of
2 200.

“ . . . the demand of electricity is around 2 200 megawatts yet our own power stations can only produce 1 100 megawatts so there is still shortage of electricity in the country.

“One of the problems we have in the country is that we have two major power sources, Hwange and Kariba. Hwange is using coal, it is a thermal power station. I had a number of discussions with experts and they said thermal power stations are only useful before 25 years. The Hwange Power Station has outlived its usefulness,” said Mashakada.

“The technology that is used is in constant breakdown and has to be repaired. There are various problems at Hwange that is why we have not been able to increase power generation.

“We now depend on Kariba and talking about Kariba, we have now found a contractor to increase two more units. We have agreed with Zambia to start working on the Batoka Hydro-Power Project.”

The Batoka project is an initiative between Zimbabwe and Zambia expected to generate 1 600 megawatts of hydro-power at the Batoka Gorge on the Zambezi River.

The Hwange Thermal Power Station is the biggest power plant in Zimbabwe.

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