(Business in Cameroon) - Initially planned for December 2023, the release of the first 60 megawatts (MW) from the Nachtigal Dam in Cameroon, a 420 MW energy project under construction in the central region, is now expected on February 24, 2024. This update was provided on January 25, 2024, by the Minister of Water and Energy, Gaston Eloundou Essomba, during a cabinet meeting in Yaoundé.
The expected release of the initial megawatts (MW) from the Nachtigal Dam into the South Interconnected Grid (RIS), covering six of Cameroon's ten regions, aims to ease the current electricity rationing caused by low water levels during the dry season. This period is marked by a decline in dam water levels, leading to reduced flows and an electricity production shortfall.
Eneo, the exclusive electricity distributor in Cameroon, attributes the current power outages primarily to the Memve'éle Dam (211 MW). Recent weeks have seen a decline in production due to low water flow during the dry season on the Ntem River, where the dam is situated.
While awaiting the construction of a reservoir dam to regulate flows on the river during the dry season, as per the government's plan, the production deficit at Memve'ele is expected to be resolved by 2025. This is anticipated with the availability of the entire 420 MW capacity of the Nachtigal Dam, scheduled for September 2024.