Energy generation rises three percent

Electricity generation in Zambia rose more than three percent during the first quarter this year as mining companies increased consumption to raise mineral output as dictated by the metal markets, a national report says.

The Lusaka based Bank of Zambia says in its report that energy generation increased by 3.1 percent to 3,509,053 megawatts per hour in the second quarter this year from 3,403,077 Mwh during the first quarter.

On a year-to-date basis, total electricity generation amounted to 6,912,130 Mwh in the first half of 2014, higher than the 6,601,175 Mwh generated in the first half of 2013, the Central Bank Governor, Michael Gondwe told Lusaka-based journalists, August 5.

In contrast, the energy sector grew six percent compared to a growth of 4.1 percent recorded in 2012 on account of increased electricity generation and reliability in the supply of petroleum products, a Zambia’s economic report for 2013 says.

Electricity generation increased by 6.4 percent to 13,782,035Mwh from 12,954,051Mwh in 2012 on account of increased electricity generation at major hydro power stations and coming on stream of 180Mw from the Kariba North Bank Extension Project.

Electricity generation at diesel power stations, however, declined due to the connection of Kaputa to the national grid. Similarly, generation at mini-hydro power stations was affected by the ongoing rehabilitation and upgrading of some stations.

Electricity consumption increased by 5.1 percent to 10,845,651 Kwh from 10,317,408 Kwh in 2012. The construction, mining (quarries) and transport sectors registered increases in electricity consumption of 38.2 percent, 83.1 percent and 19.6 percent, respectively.

This was explained by high demand for power to support increased economic activities including increased mining activities at various units where copper-related production has increased in recent months. Consumption in the manufacturing and trade sectors, however, declined.

On mining, the sector increased consumption to 54.7 percent from an initial 50 percent estimated. Zambia generates 1,400 megawatts which rises to 1,800 megawatts at peak periods, not enough to sustain the mines with reliable power supply.

According to the report electricity generation increased by 6.4 percent to 13,782,035Mwh from 12,954,051Mwh in 2012 because of increased electricity generation at major hydro power stations and coming on stream of 180Mw from the Kariba North Bank Extension Project.

Export of electricity in 2013 increased by 10.6 percent to 1,083,434 Mwh from 979,715 Mwh in 2012 on account of increased generation. Consistent with increased generation, imports declined by 55.4 percent

to 72,952 Mwh from 163,730Mwh in 2012.

Electricity generation at diesel power stations, however, declined due to the connection of Kaputa to the national grid. Similarly, generation at mini-hydro power stations was affected by the ongoing rehabilitation and upgrading of some stations.

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