The government of Zimbabwe has announced that refurbishment work on Hwange thermal power station unit 5 has been completed and is set to add an additional 160MW to the national grid.
The Minister of Energy & Power Development, Hon. Fortune Chasi revealed that, this has paved way for unit 6 to be opened up for inspection and fault diagnostics soon. He further pointed out that that productive sectors such as mining, manufacturing and farmers are going to be prioritised in the distribution of power.
“Refurbishment of Unit 6 at HPS is starting in the first week of September and it will unlock an additional 170MW to augment generation. It’s very important for our economy to continue to be operational even under the conditions that we are operating under,” he said.
“A lot of farmers are under stress as a result of insufficient power. So ZESA is under instruction to provide as much power to farmers as well as well other productive sectors like mining and manufacturing. It is very important for the public to understand that domestic users will experience load shedding in favour of productive sectors,” added Hon. Chasi
Hwange Thermal Power plant
Hwange Thermal Power Station is the biggest power plant in Zimbabwe with an installed capacity of 920 MW. It is owned and driven by the national electricity company Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA). Construction of the first stage units began in 1973, which were commissioned from 1983 to 1986, and was followed by second stage units in 1987.
Due to deterioration the plant, it was only capable of generating 327MW. This resulted to the rehabilitation and expansion of units. The deal aims at easing Zimbabwe’s long-standing power generation deficiency, which provides around 1,000MW against average demand of 1,400 MW or more. The plant currently has a total of 8 units.