Despite high abundant water levels of relief and appropriate terrain, Uganda, Tanzania and all of Central Africa do not produce electricity, they suffer from drinking and municipal water, and their irrigation of agricultural land is inadequate.
The two researcher Vojna and Xhevair Ngjeqari from Vienna University of Technology in Austria and Polis University in Albania have conducted a research project, based on which they designed the Century Project for Uganda.
The Century Project for Uganda proposes the connection with navigable canals of the Lake Edward H=913m, with the Lake Victoria and the Lake Kyoga h =1033m.
And the construction of Biso/Butiaba Hydropower Plant that produces 20-30 GWh/year without building dams and reservoirs.
After many years of study, the authors projected the connection with navigable water canals of all the major lakes of Central Africa and in perspective the transversion of Africa from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean through the Lake Tanganyika.
The projects were presented at the International Transport Forum in Leipzig, Germany on 22-25 May 2019. Representatives of African countries, the African Union and the World Bank evaluated the project as a hydro-engineering century project that were presented for the first time.
Over 50 million people live in isolation around the Lake Victoria, while about 20 million live near the Lake Tanganyika.
The navigable canals directly serve the residents living around the lakes but also all the communities of Central Africa improving directly the lives of 70 million people and boosting the economy of the country.
In the territory of Uganda, the century project based on research proposes the construction of 800 km of canals, which realize the free navigation among the lakes Eduard, Victoria and Kyoga.
The canals are designed with a trapezoidal or rectangular section, with dimensions as in the picture. According to the European standard, the canals allow the navigation of ships and ferries with a capacity of DWT 1350–1500 tons.
The navigation on the canals is free and can be done in both directions. In perspective, the canals can be enlarged or reduced as needed.
The construction of the waterways in Uganda is a continuation of the connection project with navigable canals of the lakes Victoria, Tanganyika, Malawi, Rukwa, Sagara and the capital Dodoma, in the state of Tanzania.
In 2011, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development of Uganda presented the study with the title: “Project for Master plan Study on Hydropower Development, in the Republic of Uganda”.
This study presented the hydro-energy utilization scheme of the Nile Victoria River and the Nile Kyoga River.
For the Nile Victoria River, the project envisioned the construction of the Isimba, Kalagala, Bujagali, Nalubaale, and Oben Falls Hydro Power Plants.
These waterways are presently under construction.
As for the Nile Kyoga River, the project envisions the construction of a group of hydropower plants including the Karuma, Oriang Hidro, Ayago Hidro, Murchison Hidro, Paraa GS, etc.
Currently, the Huma Central Karuma is under construction. While Ayago hydropower plant is considered a priority, because at a cost of $ 1.6-2 billion it is projected to produce up to E = 4,095GWh / year.
The Ministry of Energy has repeatedly stated that through the implementation of the hydro-energy project, Uganda will become a producer and supplier of energy for Central African countries, but this area is arguably not sufficiently hydric.
The conceptual scheme of the hydropower use of the Nile Kyoga – Lake Alberto River is based on the classical concepts of dams, stations and other hydro-technical works.
All predicted works do not produce more than E = 6 GWh / year, a relatively small level of energy production.
The century project for Uganda, in addition to connecting with the lake’s waterway, includes the design for a new hydro-engineering solution for the Nile Kyoga-Lago Alberto River.
Through a derivation of the Nile Kyoga River, the entire height of the water coming out of the Karuma Hydropower Plant and the level of Lake Alberto (H = ± 300m) could be exploited.
If the new hydropower plant works with the inflow of Isimba or Bujagali or Karuma Q = 1375 m3 / sec, it will produce E = 30 billion kWh / y = 30GWh / year, or n = 7.5 times more than Hydropower Plant Ayago, which matches the local government’s priorities.
If the new hydropower plant works with the flow of the Hydropower plant Ayago Q = 840 m3 / sec, it would produce E = 18.2-21 billion kWh / y = 0GWh / year, or n = 4.5-5 times more than Hydropower Plant Ayago.
Energy production cost is realized 1.5-2 times less than the cost of Hydropower Plant Ayago. Energy production is realized without the construction of dams, reservoirs and other hydro works.
The devirted canal or the new diverted river will also partially serve as a navigation canal between the lakes.
The new project replaces all existing works of the classic project and produces 4-5 times more electricity than the project of the Ministry of Energy and at a lower cost.
The new bed of the Nile Kyoga River would pass through the plains of Central Uganda, with no fractures or cataracts, providing drinking water, municipal water, irrigation and assists in urban redevelopment.
The construction of three or five hydropower works from the government on the existing river Nile Kyoga, demands expropriations and damages the natural environment.
In contrast, the Century Project for Uganda research demonstrates that after the diversion of the Nile Kyoga River, ecosystems can be maintained while producing a far greater energy output.
The project of the new Hydropower Plant on the diverted river Nile Kyoga Biso, together with the Karuma Hydropower Plant would produce a minimum of 24-34 Billion kWh / y or 24-34 GWh / year.
This meets local electricity needs and the surplus could supply other Central African countries.
The Century Project for Uganda is the only proposal that effectively achieves the goal of making Uganda the center of electricity generation and supply for Central African countries.
The authors believe that the project to generate electricity from the devirted Nile Kyoga River should be submitted to the Ugandan government as soon as possible so that funding for the classic Hydropower Plant Ayago Ayago Hydropower Project is temporarily suspended until a new decision is made.