Karuma Power Station

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Karuma Power Station
Karuma Power Station is located in Uganda
Karuma Power Station
Map of Uganda showing the location of Karuma
Country Uganda
Location Karuma
Coordinates 02°14′35″N 32°14′42″E / 2.24306°N 32.24500°E / 2.24306; 32.24500Coordinates: 02°14′35″N 32°14′42″E / 2.24306°N 32.24500°E / 2.24306; 32.24500
Status Under construction[1]
Commission date 2018 (expected)[2]
Power generation
Primary fuel Hydropower
Nameplate capacity 600 MW

Karuma Power Station is a 600 MW hydroelectric power project under construction in Uganda. When completed, it will be the largest power-generating installation in the country.[3]


The power station is located at Karuma on the Victoria Nile, at the present location of the Karuma Falls. This location is approximately 2.5 kilometres (1.6 mi) upstream of where the Masindi-Gulu Highway crosses the Nile. By road, it is approximately 110 kilometres (68 mi) northeast of Masindi[4] and 70 kilometres (43 mi) south of Gulu.[5]


As far back as 1995, the Government of Uganda had plans to construct a hydropower station at the site of the Karuma Falls. Initially, Norpak, a Norwegian Energy Company, was awarded the contract to perform the feasibility study and the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the dam. The World Bank promised to make a loan available to pay for the construction.[6] The feasibility study report was made available in October 2006. Bids for construction of the project went out in November 2006. Initially, the plan was to build a 200-250 MW power station.[7]

In 2009, the plans were redrawn, calling for a much larger project of 750 MW. Sometime during 2009, Norpak pulled out of the negotiations with the Ugandan government, citing the Global Recession of 2008 to 2012.[8]

The Ugandan government then contracted with Energy Infratech Private Limited to perform a new feasibility study and a new EIA, given that a larger power station was now being planned.[9] At that time, construction was expected to start in 2012 and last six years.[10]

In July 2011, media reports indicated that the maximum capacity of the project had been scaled back to 600 MW from 750 MW. Some International development partners wanted to scale back even further, to a maximum capacity of 400 to 450 MW.[11]

Construction costs[edit]

In January 2011, Energy Infratech Private Limited, the Indian company contracted to perform the feasibility study for the project, said the estimated total cost for the dam and power plant was approximately US $2.2 billion. That figure included the cost needed to build a transmission line from Karuma to a location where the power will be integrated into the national power grid.[12]

The power generated will be transmitted via high voltage wires to substations in Kawanda, Wakiso District; Kamdini, Oyam District; and Lira, Lira District. The construction costs for the high voltage transmission lines are estimated at US$250 million.[13] In July 2013, the Ugandan government awarded the construction contract to Sinohydro, a Chinese construction company. Work began in the second half of 2013 and is expected to last five years. Construction costs will be jointly funded by the Ugandan and Chinese governments.[14][15] In June 2014, the Chinese Exim Bank committed in writing to fund 85 percent of the construction costs, in the form of a concessionary loan repayable in five years. The Ugandan government will fund 15 percent of the cost.[16][17]

Photos and diagrams[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kasita, Ibrahim (13 August 2013). "Karuma Dam Project To Come Online By 2018 (Construction Started In August 2013)". New Vision. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  2. ^ Otage, Stephen (13 December 2013). "Work On Karuma Dam Begins". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  3. ^ Barigaba, Julius (10 July 2011). "Donors Query Uganda On Excess Capacity In Karuma Dam". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  4. ^ "Map Showing Masindi and Karuma Falls with Distance Marker". Globefeed.com. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  5. ^ "Road Distance Between Gulu and Karuma Falls with Map". Globefeed.com. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  6. ^ Josephine Maseruka, and Carol Natukunda (10 March 2005). "Norpak Blames World Bank On Karuma Dam". New Vision via AllAfrica.com. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  7. ^ "Uganda: More Energy, Services In 2008". East African Business Week (Uganda). 14 January 2008. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  8. ^ Habati, Mubatsi Asinja (14 May 2012). "Bribery Hits 600MW Karuma Power Dam (Karuma Dam Timeline)". The Independent (Uganda). Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  9. ^ "Energy Infratech Is Providing Technical and Management Services For Karuma Power Station". Energy Infratech Limited. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  10. ^ Lal, Shialendraumar (1 December 2011). "Rural Areas Say Bye To Darkness: UETCL 10th Anniversary". New Vision. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  11. ^ Martin Luther, Oketch (17 June 2011). "Government Yet To Agree On Control of Oil Tax Cash". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  12. ^ Lauren, van der Westhuizen (14 March 2011). "Uganda Increases Cost Estimate for Karuma Hydropower Plant to $2.2 Billion". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  13. ^ George, Muzoora (13 August 2013). "Museveni commissions Karuma". Daily Monitor. Retrieved 19 April 2014. 
  14. ^ Alex, Masereka (16 July 2013). "Government, China To Jointly Fund Karuma Power Dam Construction". The Red Pepper (Uganda). Retrieved 10 December 2014. 
  15. ^ Kasita, Ibrahim (11 June 2014). "Work On Karuma Hydropower Project On Track". New Vision (Kampala). Retrieved 13 June 2014. 
  16. ^ Mugalu, Moses (19 June 2014). "China Exim Bank Offers Funds for Karuma Dam". The Observer (Uganda). Retrieved 10 December 2014. 
  17. ^ EABW, . (21 June 2014). "Uganda: China Bank Guarantees Karuma Dam Payment". East African Business Week via AllAfrica.com. Retrieved 10 December 2014. 

External links[edit]