Energy and Power Development Minister Zhemu Soda has said the Kariba Hydro Power Station will not shut down completely but will continue to generate about 300 megawatts (MW) daily pending a review of the water situation in Lake Kariba next year.
Addressing the media at his offices in Harare late Friday afternoon, Soda said that the government has come up with immediate measures to deal with the current power challenges. He said:
ZPC had indeed exhausted its water allocation for the year 2022. However, Kariba Power Station will not shut down completely, rather it will continue to generate but at a reduced capacity of up to 300 megawatts daily average pending a review of the water situation at the dam in January 2023.
This means that the power station has the latitude to vary its capacity as long as it maintains the required average capacity.
… In the immediate term, Government has come up with measures through its utility ZESA and IPPs to increase imports from the region.
Bilaterally, ZESA is currently negotiating for additional imports from the current suppliers.
More power will also be secured through the SAPP (Southern African Power Pool) market.
ZPC will ramp up production at Hwange Power Station to average 400MW and small thermals are expected to produce a combined total of 45MW.
We will give support to all IPPs to enable them to produce at maximum capacity.
Soda said Unit 7 is undergoing commissioning and will start feeding power into the grid later this month.
The commissioning of Unit 8 will follow within the first three months of next year, he said.
He said several companies will soon be feeding various amounts of power into the national grid. Said Soda:
Through Statutory Instrument 38 of 2022, net-metering regulations were amended to exempt from licensing a capacity of up to 5MW.
This incentive is expected to result in increased internal generation as companies set up their solar generation systems.
Caledonia Mine (12 MW), Richo Solar (1,3MW) and Guruve (1,2MW) will soon be feeding into the national grid.