Zambia Approves Construction of Second Coal Plant To Deal with Severe Power Cuts

Frequent droughts in the country have produced 12-hour power cuts due to the country's reliance on hydro

By Joseph-Albert Kuuire 2 Min Read

Zambia’s energy regulator has approved the construction of the country’s second coal-fired power plant. The approval comes as Zambia is going through its worst drought in decades.

The drought has affected the output at the hydroelectric dams which account for most of its energy supply.


Zambia’s Energy Regulation Board awarded a construction permit for the 300-megawatt coal plant which will be located in the southern part of the country. The new plant will double the capacity of an existing plant at the site

Maamba Collieries Ltd., majority owned by Hyderabad, India-based Nava Ltd. will lead the project.

Zoom Out

Zambia currently relies on hydroelectric turbines to generate about 85% of its power. The country’s heavy dependence on hydro led to frequent power cuts due to water level drops during droughts.

There have been rolling power cuts which last a minimum of 12 hours a day.

By The Numbers

Zambia’s national pension fund is evaluating a proposal to provide financing for part of the estimated $400 million project.

Between The Lines

Financing new coal power has become increasingly difficult as many banks, including Chinese state-owned lenders, have stopped lending for projects that burn the dirtiest fossil fuel. 

Source: Bloomberg

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Joseph-Albert Kuuire is the creator, editor, and journalist at Tech Labari. Email: Twitter: @jakuuire
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