Edenville to develop 100 MW power plant at Tanzania coal play

A coal exploring company, Edenville Energy has confirmed its intention to construct a 100 MW power station at its Tanzania-based Rukwa coal project, supplying energy directly into the country’s proposed new power grid.

This follows a recent indication by the government of its commitment to begin construction of the country's main power grid in 2014. 

The Africa-focused miner said in a statement this week that the government had indicated that construction of the Western Power Line, between Mbeya and Sumbawanga, would start in 2014 and was expected to be completed during 2016 – far earlier than previously indicated.

The primary transmission line would pass Sumbawanga, in close proximity to Rukwa, ultimately linking the existing and future power generation sources in the south and south-west of Tanzania to the load centres in the Mwanza and Arusha regions in the north.

The government's intention was to increase installed generation capacity from its current 1 438 MW to 2 780 MW by 2015, providing access to electricity to an additional four-million people.

Edenville’s announcement followed a September scoping study at Rukwa, which indicated that it was “commercially attractive” for the company to build a small power generation facility that will operate independently of the main grid and require only a small share of the company's total coal resource.

“However, the accelerated progress of the Western power line gives Edenville the opportunity to move towards development of a larger power station, using Edenville's entire coal resource, which would feed directly into the new grid infrastructure,” commented chairperson Sally Schofield.

She added that there was also potential to export power directly into Zambia, or other neighbouring states, using the existing 66 kV interconnector at Sumbawanga. Edenville’s management team was currently in early-stage discussions with potential Asian partners with the relevant experience and expertise to develop the project.

These potential partners were “highly experienced” in the feasibility, construction and funding of projects of a similar scale, and with a similar quality of coal to that of Rukwa. 

Discussions were also under way with qualified engineering and power consultants to guide the development process, including early-stage technical work, large-scale bulk sampling and metallurgical testwork, for a wash plant and power plant design.

“The accelerated progress of the Western power line is a tremendous advancement not only for Tanzania but for Edenville. With a 100-MW-plus power plant, we believe we will have a sustainable, long-term project that can contribute significantly to Tanzania's future power requirements,” Schofield noted.

Meanwhile, Edenville Energy's shares at London stock market jumped after it announced that it intended to construct a 100MW power station at its Rukwa-based coal project that will supply energy directly into Tanzania's proposed new power grid.

"The accelerated progress of the Western Power Line is a tremendous advancement not only for Tanzania but also for Edenville. We have taken the decision to expand and accelerate our plans following the government's confirmation of the timeframes for building the new grid infrastructure," said Ms Schofield.

“With a 100MW plus power plant we believe we will have a sustainable, long-term project that can contribute significantly to Tanzania's future power requirements."
Source: Daily News, reported from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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