Luisenga Hydro Power Project

Project Developer: Mwenga Hydro Ltd.

Project Partners: The project will be wholly developed by RVE

Project Status: Under Development

The Luisenga Hydro Power Project is located in the Mufindi District (Southern Tanzanian Highlands), an area in which economy is dominated by agricultural activities, industrial and smallholder tea farming, small timber plantations, plus various subsistence farming activities.

The hydro site utilises the large drop in altitude of the Mufindi escarpment, where the 430m head site will generate 2.5MW. The Project is expected to supply approximately 12.2 GWh of energy annually to a variety of customers including RVE’s rural distribution unit RPDL, who is supplying a growing Mwenga/Kihansi rural network, used by households, villages institutions and the local SME sector. RVE additionally wishes to install the necessary HV and LV lines and transformers to the nearby village/hamlets free of charge, to allow more households access to electricity.

The project will improve significantly the electricity supply (reliability and quality) to the nearby tea industry, where the processing of tea (in factories) requires significant amounts of energy. Currently this electrical energy is sourced from a combination of TANESCO and standby diesel generators, with additional fuel-wood being used to meet thermal needs. The factories in general, rely on diesel generators for backup electricity requirements and a renewable energy supply will help to replace this expensive and air-polluting diesel supply.

Further the reliability of RVE’s private rural grid supplying the area is expected to significantly improve as a result of this project. The additional power will feed into the far end of a long power line, stabilizing the local voltage, minimizing voltage drop and providing a source of islanded power to a section of the local grid in the event of the main grid not being available. As mentioned above, the additional power at this end of the rural network will allow for future expansions of the distribution network to more remote villages and houses.