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Friday, 2 December 2016

Zambia gets Euro 27 million water security initiative for Lusaka ……….Borehole sinking will need permission from regulator to save ground water

Unsecured water like this source is a risk to humanity, globally.pix.emaze.com

Dec. 2 (Zambia Informer) ----- Germany and Britain have jointly financed the Zambia’s Government-through the private sector under a Euro 27 million International Water Stewardship programme to provide a clean resource in the capital, Lusaka.

This follows increased concerns of water bodies in Lusaka being vulnerable to contamination coupled with increased cases of climatic change effects that have adversely affected water tables that have ultimately affected the unending needs of the more than 2million population in the capital.

The programme, jointly undertaken with the private sector involves 16 Government and private institutions including the local municipality that seek sustained usage and consumption of clean water that have come under severe threat from environmental related activities including defecation, pollution, washing and  poor solid waste management which has affected the cleanliness of the resource.

During the launch of the joint partnership between the cooperating partners, government agencies and other members of the private sector including Zambia Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ZACCI), World Wide Fund for Nature, University of Zambia, among others, Germany and Britain said it had supported the Government in the provision of clean water in the capital to meet the desirous needs of consumers following several appeals following increased cases of contamination of water bodies. 

Britain is co-financing the project dubbed: Lusaka Water Security Initiative (LuWSI) , through its foreign wing- the Department for International Development (DfID),  a United Kingdom government department responsible for administering overseas aid and Germany’s Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) or GmbH a company specialising in international development and is headquartered in Bonn and Eschborn.

Germany Ambassador to Zambia Achim Burkart said the integrated project started in 2012 with the Itawa springs project in Ndola when GIZ was approached by the Zambia Breweries Plc to assist them overcome problems faced with the company’s shared water source which has come under severe stress from encroachments, farming and brick making activities, among others, which threatened its US$150 million investment in its brewery and soft drink manufacturing plant.

The Germany agency later acted as a honest broker in the matter by helping the Zambia Breweries Plc to partner with local community and others from the private sector including the Ndola Municipality and the local water utility company, Kafubu Water and Sewerage Company to overcome the problem and restore the ecological problem that had emanated from the shared water resource.

Burkart added that the partnership with the 15-members of the private sector under the LuWSi, including the Water Regulatory Authority (WARMA) will among other advantages help to overcome climatic change effects.

The LuWaSi project will further assist in the provision of climatically-friendly sanitation in peri-urban areas of Lusaka, whose population, remains a threat on the security of the water source from contamination, hence the security is no longer guaranteed as the population, relying on water bodies continues to increase in view of the urbanization.

DfID’s  head of delegation in Zambia, Bruce Lawson Mac Dowell regretted that water supply in most developing countries has come under intense pressure because increased unplanned structures hence the need to assist with such initiatives which have been undertaken in other parts of the countries.

He noted, however that water sources have remained a threat to most of the economies despite the abundance of water, as much of it has been either polluted or contaminated because of the increasing demand for unplanned structures or settlements hence the donors’ commitment to assist.

Chairperson for LuSWi and leader of Zambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Geoffrey Sakulanda commended the donors for their support towards the project. 

He was however quick to point out that securing water everywhere remains a challenge and remains a complex issued. He called for concerted effort by all players in ensuring that the project, launched, benefits the Lusaka populace and further ensure it remains sustainable even after donors leave for want of resources to spare for the continuation of the programme. 

World Wide Fund for nature (WWF) Nyambe Nyambe while commending the donors for their unwavering support towards making Lusaka  water secure through such initiatives called for increased mobilization and commitment from the private sector to ensure such projects do not falter after donors reduce or withdraw their funding amid growing commitments to various other projects.

And Lusaka deputy mayor, Chilando Chitambala, who is also Roma Ward 17 councilor said the local municipality was happy with the gesture extended to the private sector of securing the water and reiterated President Edgar Lungu’s warning that the local authority will not allow any structures that will be constructed on water points to avoid contamination and those found risk being demolished.

On concerns of unregulated and indiscriminate sinking of boreholes in various parts of Lusaka, which has contributed to low water levels and contamination of water bodies, managing director at WARMA Paul Kapotwe warned that with the revised laws now in effect, all those contractors seeking to sink boreholes need to be registered with the agency while every bore sunk,, need to carry specifications outlined by his organisation to save the underground water from further contamination and abuse.

And officially opening the launch of the LuWSi project, Bishop Dr. Edward Chomba while commending the donors for their unwavering support towards Zambia’s attainment of Sustainable Development Goals, of which providing clean and safe drinking water for all is a pre-requisite regretted at Zambia’s failure to maximize its vast headwaters, in which Zambia is estimated to own 60 percent of water bodies in the Southern African region.

He, however, urged stakeholders to ensure that since water, deemed “life”, its security remains paramount for economic growth and wondered why the country has not maximized on the availability of among other water sources, the Kafue basin, Barotse, among others that can assist make the commodity abundant for all if well managed and secured.

News Just In!!!-----‘Hear the news first’

      * Zambia launches a Euro 27 million-donor sponsored  Lusaka water  security initiative programme.
Details coming soon

Thursday, 1 December 2016

MIGA guarantees US$29 mln for Zambia’s clean energy generation

Dec. 1 (Zambia Informer)-----Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), a unit of the World Bank has guaranteed a disbursement of US$29.1 million to assist Zambia’s Ithezi Thezi power project, as a measure to bolster clean energy generation in Africa’s second copper rich producer.

The 120-megawatt power plant, being undertaken jointly by Tata Power and Zambia’s power utility, known as Zesco, is expected to be disbursed as equity for the Ithezi Tezhi Power Cop. Ltd. In Zambia to assist in the finalization and commissioning of the project as the country seeks to raise its power generation and meet the increasing demand by domestic and industrial users in the country as well as meet export demands.

The hydro station once commissioned at completion, is expected to avoid almost 590,000 tons in annual Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions while generating 611 gigawatt hours of power each year.

According to recent estimates, Zambia’s power capacity averages 2,317 megawatts of the available 6,000 megawatts, prompting the Zambia’s government to seek to compliment hydro generation with other sources including biomass, solar and geothermal.

World Bank, in a statement in Lusaka, Thursday, says  the guarantee, whose actual date of disbursement is not stated is intended to support the operation of the 120 MW hydropower station lying on the Itezhi Tezhi dam along the Kafue River.

The world Bank agency-MIGA, is providing coverage for up to 15 years against the risk of Transfer Restriction, Expropriation, War and Civil Disturbance and Breach of Contract.

And commenting on the equity guarantee, MIGA Executive Vice President and CEO Keiko Honda added that separate from the climate benefits, the power station – which is the first sizable private sector developed hydropower plant in Zambia, is expected to  service regional markets and provide employment to local communities adding:

“This project is a triple-win: it helps boost Zambia’s competitiveness by delivering reliable power, contributes to climate change mitigation through clean energy, and reinforces south-south investment,”

Hydropower remains the key source of energy generation in Zambia, accounting for 94 percent of the country’s electricity mix. However, the country’s total currently installed hydropower capacity is about 2,317 megawatts, while the potential is estimated to exceed 6,000 MW, which if realized, could be harnessed for both domestic consumption as well as exports.

However MIGA is happy with the equity guarantee for Zambia stating that the project will assist boost Zambia’s competitiveness by delivering reliable power, contributes to climate change mitigation through clean energy, and reinforces south-south investment.

 “This project is a triple-win: it helps boost Zambia’s competitiveness by delivering reliable power, contributes to climate change mitigation through clean energy, and reinforces south-south investment,” MIGA Executive Vice President and CEO Keiko Honda.

Hydro generation remains the key source of energy generation in Zambia, accounting for 94 percent of the country’s electricity mix. However, the country’s total currently installed hydropower capacity is about 2,317 MW, while the potential is estimated to exceed 6,000 MW, which if maximized and realized, could be harnessed for both domestic consumption as well as exports.

Tata Power is elated with the gesture By MIGA noting that the partnership between Government and the private sector, if harnessed can work for the betterment of people’s lives and society.

“The Itezhi Tezhi power plant is a shining example of how government and private businesses can work together for the betterment of society. Each unit of electricity that is produced from this power plant utilizes natural resources bestowed upon this country and in doing so maximizes value for all our stakeholders” stated Anil Sardana, the Chief executive officer and Managing Director for Tata Power.

MIGA’s guarantees are a key component of Tata Power’s global risk management strategy in support of its international diversification activities, including in Africa, away from fossil fuels and into renewables.

Global commodity prices, international financing conditions, Zambia’s Doing Business ranking, and the IMF’s Debt Sustainability Analysis (DSA) were among the factors considered in MIGA’s provision of its guarantees for this project, the statement adds of the MIGA.

The project is registered as a Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) project with the UNFCCC, and will result in a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions of almost 590,000 tCO2e per year.

Accordingly, the project’s total cost is US$239m, with a debt to equity ratio of 70:30. The African Development Bank, FMO - the Dutch development bank, Proparco - a subsidiary of the Agence Française de Développement, the Development Bank of Southern Africa and India EXIM are providing credit for the project.

The Tata Power Company Limited and ZESCO, Zambia’s national power utility company are 50-50 equity owners in the project.

MIGA is a multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) and a member of the World Bank Group with a mission to promote foreign direct investment (FDI) into developing countries to help support economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve people's lives.

The Ithezi Thezi power plant co-owned by power utility Zambia Electricity Supply Corp. and Tata Power, India’s largest integrated power company,was commissioned in February this year.
The event graced by President Edgar Lungu entailedthe commissioning of two units of 60 MW each of its 120 MW Itezhi Tezhi hydro Power Project in Zambia.
The synchronisation of both the units was completed in January, 2016. The JV partner ZESCO wishes to celebrate commissioning of the Itezhi Tezhi Power Project by inviting Edgar Lungu, the President of Zambia, to dedicate it to the nation, according to data.
The 120 MW Itezhi Tezhi Power Project is situated on the Itezhi Tezhi Dam.The initial purpose of the Itezhi Tezhi Dam, constructed in the 1970s, was to serve as a reservoir for the Kafue Gorge power station.
However, due to an acute power deficit in the late 2000s, the Zambian Government revived its plans to construct a hydro power plant in close proximity to the dam site.
The 120 MW project was, thereafter, selected as a viable brownfield solution to address the power shortage in Zambia, and the Itezhi Tezhi Power Corporation (ITPC) was incorporated in 2007, the first of a kind in projects undertaken under a public private partnership (PPP) in the power sector in Zambia.
The ownership of the project by the two companies is on a 50:50 percent basis on a 25 year BOOT (Build-Own-Operate-Transfer) concession term. ZESCO is the sole off-taker of power from the ITT power plant.