The Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) announced that the ongoing 294.2 million U.S. dollar rehabilitation project for the Kariba Dam wall has reached 80 per cent completion as of the recent update on Wednesday.
This comprehensive project involves three key components: reshaping the plunge pool, refurbishing the spillway upstream control facility, and enhancing institutional capabilities. The ZRA, a bi-national entity managing the dam on behalf of Zambia and Zimbabwe, anticipates finishing the rehabilitation by the first quarter of 2025.
Munyaradzi Munodawafa, the CEO of ZRA, highlighted the historic nature of the Kariba Dam Rehabilitation Project (KDRP), describing it as the first endeavour of this scale involving open-pit excavation near a 60-year-old dam while the underground powerhouses on either side of the river remain in full operation. Currently, the overall progress, including the Spillway Refurbishment sub-project, stands at approximately 80 per cent completion.
The primary objective of the KDRP, according to ZRA, is to address safety concerns related to the dam’s structure and ensure its long-term reliability and safe operation.
The Kariba Dam, shared between Zimbabwe and Zambia, serves as a crucial water source for both countries. It facilitates Zambia’s 1,080 megawatts (MW) North Bank Power Station and Zimbabwe’s 1,050 MW South Bank Power Station, also known as the Kariba Hydro Power Station. Recently, Chinese firm Sinohydro has conducted upgrades to both power stations, contributing 360 MW to the North Bank Power Station and 300 MW to the Kariba Power Station.