NamPower says the Kunene River has failed to fill up despite good rains in country, affecting output at Ruacana Hydro Power Station.
“The rainfall in the Kunene River catchment areas inside Angola has not really translated into increased river flow at Ruacana Power Station. The river flow has increased slightly from the low flow season levels but it is still low compared to the previous years,”NamPower corporate communication manager ,Tangeni Kambangula said.
The power utility said the situation had been worsened by a drought that occurred last year, affecting parts of the country, negatively impacting on the river flow.
NamPower last November revealed for the month of January 2013, output at the Ruacana declined approximately 10% (from 242 cubic meters per second in January 2012 to 181cubic meters per second in January 2013).
The situation according to NamPower, worsened in February, declining 30% and by November stood at 60 cubic meters per meters, compared to the 70 cubic meters per second required to operate a machine and 280 cubic meters per second required to operate the whole power station at full load.
Nampower is currently a main importer of electricity from regional partners, with about 6o% to 80% in dry season, lets note that the Sadc region is facing power shortages , a situation that is expected to continue for the next three years.
This comes as South Africa, has announced amendments to its Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act ,which will give it power to regulate, the export of electricity by Eskom to other countries. It means Namibia might experience a cut from its main electricity supplier, from which it receives 12% of its power.
NamPower, however, said the proposed law did not come as a surprise ,as it was already being subjected to the conditions under the current supplementary agreement between the two utilities. “We have, however, been able to manage our supply despite the difficulties. We are therefore confident that we will be able to manage under the new circumstances, provided that our customers also assist us by using electricity sparingly, especially during peak time (8 to10 am and & and 8pm),” she said.
Eskom’s power remains under strains due to heavy rains that saw the country declaring a power emergency and effecting load shedding.
In April last year, Eskom informed NamPower, it had embarked on a concerted effort to reduce its generation maintenance backlog and requested the power company to use and source energy from it, as conservatively as possible.