Lake Nzilo

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Lake Nzilo
Lake Delcommune Satellite photo.jpg
Lake Delcommune, now called Lake Nzilo, as of September 1994
Coordinates 10°33′35″S 25°37′41″E / 10.55971°S 25.628014°E / -10.55971; 25.628014Coordinates: 10°33′35″S 25°37′41″E / 10.55971°S 25.628014°E / -10.55971; 25.628014
Basin countries Democratic Republic of the Congo
Surface area 200 square kilometres (77 sq mi)[1]
Surface elevation 1,200 metres (3,900 ft)[2]

Lake Nzilo (formerly Lake Delcommune, also Lac del Commune) is an artificial lake formed by a hydroelectric dam on the Lualaba River in the Katanga Province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is about 10 miles (16 km) northeast of the major copper mining area of Kolwezi. The lake was originally named after the Belgian soldier and explorer Alexandre Delcommune.

The hydroelectric dam was built to provide power for mining operations.[3] The infrastructure of this plant is four units and has a design capacity of 10MWe. The last unit was commissioned in 1953. It is currently operated by SNEL (Societe Nationale d'Electricite).[4] The lake also provides a source of water for these operations.[2] The lake was an area of wetlands before it was dammed, and some of the land around the lake is swampy. It has been stocked with fish, and is now an important site for waterbirds.[5] As of 2007 the lake was popular with the expatriate community for weekend water sports. Although the lake is visibly polluted by the effluent from a copper mine, schistosomiasis seems to thrive and a number of infections have been reported.[6]


  1. ^ Wildlife Conservation Society (December 2003). "Democratic Republic of Congo Environmental Analysis". Retrieved 2011-12-04. 
  2. ^ a b KEITH E. BANISTER, ROLAND G. BAILEY (July 1979). "Fishes collected by the Zaire River Expedition, 1974-75". Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 66: 205–249. doi:10.1111/j.1096-3642.1979.tb01909.x. Retrieved 2011-12-04. 
  3. ^ Davies, Bryan Robert; Walker, Keith F. (1986). The Ecology of river systems. Springer. p. 203. ISBN 90-6193-540-7. 
  4. ^ "Global Energy Observatory". Retrieved 29 May 2014. 
  5. ^ R.H. Hughes et al, (1992). "Zaire: Lake Del Commune". Wetlands International global site. Retrieved 2011-12-04. 
  6. ^ J Clerinx (11 October 2007). "Active intestinal schistosomiasis in travellers returning from the Democratic Republic of the Congo". Eurosurveillance 12 (41). Retrieved 2011-12-04.