Energy In Sudan
ELECTRIC POWER GENERATION IS PRESENTLY PROVIDED BY THE NATIONAL ELECTRICITY CORPORATION (NEC), BUT an Independent Power Producer and New Generation Projects General Secretariat have been established to represent the parastatal in dealing with independent power producers, who are now being encouraged to invest in Sudan. The term options offered to Independent Power Producers (IPP) include:-
1. Build,Own, and Operate (BOO)
2. Build, Own, Operate, and Transfer (BOOT)
3. Build, Operate, and Transfer (BOT)
4. Build, Own, and Lease (BOL)
5. Rehabilitate, Operate, and Transfer (ROT)
6. Rehabilitate, Own, and Operate (ROO)
Present power generation capacity is 728
Megawatts (55.6% thermal and 44.4% hydroelectric). Only 20% of the population enjoys electricity supplied by NEC’s limited capacity. In Khartoum, the country’s main market for electricity, residential customers account for 43% of the consumption, industry and agriculture 36%, government 12%, and commercial establishments 9%.
The National Energy Plan targets an increase of generated power capacity to 5,000MW over the next ten years. Hydroelectric power generation potential is estimated at 11,202MW – 9,602MW in the Northern Nile Valley and
1,600MW from Juba in the southern part of the country. Also, plans are underway to produce 200MW of electricity from liquefied natural gas (LNG). For the long term, LNG and hydroelectric potential resources combined are
sufficient to serve an economy with a domestic turnover of several hundred billion dollars.
The 1,250-MW Merowe Dam project is being constructed some 250 miles north of Khartoum at the Nile River’s fourth cataract. So far, Egypt has voiced no major objections to the project’s planned diversion of Nile River flows.
Completion of the project is scheduled for July 2008. The French power firm, Alstom, is doing the main work at a cost of $300 million. Harbin Power of China has the contract to build seven substations and around 1,000 miles of transmission lines. The Merowe project has received funding commitments of $15 million or more each from Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and other Arab investors. Three packages of the civil works portion of the dam are to cost an additional $1.9 billion. A consortia, comprised of China International Water & Electric and China National Water Resources & Hydro-power Engineering Corporation, is doing the civil works.
Also, currently under construction is the 300-MW capacity Kajbar Dam, located at the Nile’s second cataract. An agreement to finance the Kajbar project was signed between Sudan and China in September 1997. Under the terms of the agreement, China is financing 75% of the project (approximately $200 million) and Sudan is to provide the remaining 25%.
The total investment planned for major projects in the power generation sector is $3billion, with a view to achieving virtually universal electric power access.
New and Renewable Energy development is pursued as a matter of policy, with a view to reducing the local consumption of petroleum, in order to prolong the life of reserves while optimizing export earnings. Schemes in operation include solar energy, which has been introduced in some remote rural areas mainly for pumping, heating, and distilling water. Now, solar energy is being used in the operation of communications stations, for cooling and lighting. According to the Ministry of Energy and Mining’s Investment Unit, “The duration of sun falls on Sudan 10-12 hours a day. The average annual solar radiation varies from 6.8 to 10 Giga joules per square meter. This energy is twice as much as the oil reserves in the world.”
Wind power is also used in a number of Sudan’s states to generate electricity and pump water. Research is being conducted in the use of biogas technology, as well as stowage of peanut shells, cotton stalks and other agricultural by-products into pressed cubes that can be used as fuel. An improved charcoal stove project, which now has three factories with a total annual output of 15,000 units, has occasioned reduced destruction of the biomass, which still provides 80% of the country’s energy supply.
Biogas is being promoted in the rural areas to replace the prevalent usage of firewood.