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Cameroon seeks optimization study of Sanaga hydropower potential

Cameroon’s Electricity Development Corporation (EDC) invites expressions of interest by 7 June from qualified consultants to carry out a study for the optimal development of the hydropower potential of the Sanaga river basin.

The study, which is to be co-financed by the French Development Agency and the World Bank’s International Development Association, is designed to provide a framework for the Government to ensure that each site in the river basin is developed to its maximum potential, in a sustainable manner in respect of environmental and social standards, maximizing income from the development of these natural resources to ensure an equitable sharing of resources between all stakeholders and access to a low cost and stable supply of power to the population of Cameroon.

The selected consultant is expected to: review and update the Sanaga water resources inventory, taking into account existing developments in the watershed; carry out an outline study for each hydroelectric site, downstream of the Lom Pangar dam, whose contents should present the different technical scenarios and recommend the best development options, integrating technical, economic, environmental and social aspects; propose a master plan for the development of the hydroelectric potential of the Sanaga Basin; and, propose a shortlist of sites to be developed, to be ranked in order of priority, taking into account projections of domestic electricity demand.

According to studies, up to 6000 MW of new hydropower capacity, representing half of the country’s total estimated untapped potential, could be developed in the river basin. The construction of the Lom Pangar dam, which was fully impounded in 2016, has enhanced the hydro potential of the river Sanaga. With a reservoir with a useful capacity of 6 x 109 m3, the dam substantially reduces the seasonal variability of water flow in the river and has already resulted in an increase in the guaranteed downstream flow to 1040 m3/s from around 720 m3/s prior to its installation. As a result, its development has increased the energy production capacity of each downstream hydroelectric site by nearly 40 per cent, according to EDC. Potential hydropower sites downstream from the Lom Pangar dam are therefore Cameroon’s most attractive energy assets, as a result of their highly competitive production costs and profitability, and the Government of Cameroon plans to involve national and international private investors as well as development partners able to mobilize capital for finance the construction of planned infrastructure.

For further information, contact Salihou Bapetel, Procurement Department, Electricity Development Corporation (EDC), 4ème étage, Porte 412, Immeuble Hibiscus, Hippodrome, Rue des Banques, BP 15 111 Yaoundé; Tel: +237 22 22 06 22/22 23 10 89/22 05 98 39; Fax: +237 22 23 11 13. Website: http://www.edc-cameroon.org. Expressions of interest should be submitted either by email to salihoubm@yahoo.ca, with a copy to simplicetowa@yahoo.fr or by hand to the above address.

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