The Zambezi River Authority increased water allocations to Zambia’s and Zimbabwe’s power utilities, enabling them to produce more electricity.
Water levels at Kariba Dam have risen to 85 percent full, which is two meters below the full operating level and 11 meters above the minimum operating level,” the Lusaka-based body said in an emailed statement Friday. The ZRA manages the dam on behalf of Zambia and Zimbabwe and allocates water use evenly between the countries.
The state-owned Zambia Electricity Supply Corp. and Zimbabwe Power Co. are expected to jointly use about 23 billion cubic meters of water for the remainder of 2018, bringing the total annual allocation to 45 billion cubic meters for 2018, the ZRA said.
“This is an increase of 32 percent from the original 2018 water allocation and is expected to help increase electricity generation at Kariba Dam,” it said.
In 2015 and 2016, southern Africa and the Zambezi River Catchment in particular received average to below-average rainfall because of the El-Nino weather phenomenon.