TRYNESS TEMBO, Lusaka
ABOUT US$64.39 million has been set aside by Government to electrify four districts in Southern Province intended to enhance trade and improve the lifestyle of people in rural areas.
The implementation of the project is expected to create 100 jobs for locals and areas to be electrified are Siavonga, Gwembe, Sinazongwe and Monze.
According to an environmental impact assessment (EIA) report by Zesco Limited submitted to the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA), the districts have a very limited power supply as most of the areas are not connected to the national grid.
The few that are connected to power experience severe under-voltages during peak periods due to increased demand for electricity services over the years.
“Districts of Siavonga, Gwembe, Sinazongwe and Monze are supplied through 33 kilovolts (kV) network. To say that these four districts are in dire need of a clean and reliable supply of energy is an understatement,” Zesco notes.
The areas have vast potential in mining, tourism and other sectors of the economy that is untapped at present.
“In view of all these factors, Government intends to electrify the Kariba Lakeshore/Bottom Road through the construction of the 132kV transmission line, complete with 33/11kV sub-stations and 33kV and 11kV distribution lines and all other related infrastructure…”
“[These are] aimed at, among other things, addressing the challenges of low voltages in the few places that have power,” the EIA reads.
The report says a source sub-station at Siavonga has been identified and about 140 kilometres of 132kV transmission line will have to be built emanating from the new Siavonga 330/132/33/11kV sub-station south-westwards through Sianyoolo to Munyumbwe.
It also states that two sub-stations will then be established, at Sianyolo along the Bottom road and the other at Munyumbwe.
The load centres are distant from each other, therefore, 33kV will be used for distribution to the load centres.
The proposed power line will be operated and maintained by Zesco Limited in accordance with standard procedures designed to ensure integrity of the power line system.