Rufiji River in Selous
Map of the Rufiji River drainage basin. The separate, endorheic Lake Sulunga basin is shown in green.
|Length||600 km (370 mi)|
The Rufiji River lies entirely within Tanzania. The river is formed by the confluence of the Kilombero and Luwegu rivers. It is approximately 600 kilometres (370 mi) long, with its source in southwestern Tanzania and its mouth on the Indian Ocean at a point between Mafia Island called Mafia Channel. Its principal tributary is the Great Ruaha River. It is navigable for about 100 kilometres (62 mi).
A branch of ancient sea routes led down the East African coast called "Azania" by the Greeks and Romans in the 1st century CE as described in the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea (and, very probably, Chinese: 澤散 in the 3rd century by the Chinese), at least as far as the port known to the Romans as Rhapta, which was probably located in the delta of the Rufiji River in modern Tanzania.
During the First World War, from October 1914 to July 1915, the river delta was the scene of a protracted naval operation. These were the attempts, and later achievement, by the Royal Navy to neutralize and destroy the German cruiser Konigsberg.
The catchment basin for the Rufiji River complex is 177,429 square kilometres (68,506 sq mi).
|Rufiji (lower river)||27,160||15||5|
Tanzania president John Magufuli has given an approval of constructing a new Stiegler's Gorge Hydroelectric Power Station of 2,115MW over the river in the area. This new step will result to an additional 2,100 megawatts of electricity, which means more than triple Tanzania's installed hydropower capacity of 562 megawatts. The project had started on July 26, 2019 and will be ready by 2022.
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