Saturday, September 6, 2014

World Water Week applauds Nigeria on showcasing Kashimbilla Dam

(Federal Ministry of
Water Resources Report) –
The Nigerian Government on
Wednesday September 3, 2014
was applauded in Sweden for her efforts in constructing the multi-billion naira Kashimbilla Dam as one of the global
strategies for connecting the nexus of food, water and energy.

While speaking at the African Focus Day at the 24th Edition of
the World Water Week in Stockholm – Sweden, the Minister
of Water Resources, Sarah Reng Ochekpe said that the dam which cost the federal government $1 billion would generate about 30 megawatts of electricity to Benue
and Taraba States.

Sarah Ochekpe also noted that the project was undertaken by
the Government as a preventive measure to cushion the likely
eventual breakage of Lake Nyos in the Cameroon as well as for use in irrigation purposes.

"The Kashimbilla / Gamovo Buffer
Dam and Associated Structures in Taraba State of Nigeria is a
multipurpose dam, principally designed to check the threat of
the flood anticipated from the imminent break of the structurally weak volcanic Lake Nyos, situated upstream along the Cameroon line of volcanic activity.
The Kashimbilla Dam
Project is therefore a proactive preemptive response by the
Government of Nigeria to the report of the United Nations
Environmental Programme (UNEP) on the anticipated great
catastrophe that might result from the imminent collapse of
Lake Nyos," the Minister explained.

"Lake Nyos is a deep lake, high on the flank of an inactive volcano in the Oku Volcanic Plain along the Cameroon line of
volcanic activity. A volcanic dam impounds the lake waters and a pocket of magma lies beneath the lake and leaks carbon dioxide
(CO2) into the water, changing it into carbonic acid.

Nyos is one of only three known exploding lakes to be saturated with carbon dioxide in this way, the others being Lake Monoun also in Cameroon and Lake Kivu in the Democratic Republic of Congo."

She added that the Kashimbilla Dam Project was conceived with the principles of integrated water resources management in mind, believing that water drives the economic and social development of nations and has a basic function in maintaining the integrity of the environment.

According to her, in developing the Kashimbilla Dam Project, a holistic approach to water
management in which many different aspects are closely
connected and work successfully together was adopted.

She further inferred that the Kashimbilla Multipurpose Dam
Project has three components
comprising of 40 megawatts hydro power which would utilize about 140 m3/second water
supply component, including a water treatment plant with a capacity of 60,000m3 /day to
provide water to about 400,000 people and an irrigation
component designed to utilize 86,400m3/day to irrigate about
2000 hectares of farmland.

Ochekpe iterated that there are also ample provisions for fisheries development, tourism
and water for the sustenance of the environment and for
downstream residents.

"A process which promotes the coordinated development and
management of water, land and
related resources has been adopted in order to maximize the resultant economic activities and social welfare of benefiting
communities in an equitable manner; taking due cognizance
of the sustainability of vital ecosystems in line with the Global Water Partnership's
definition of Integrated Water
Resources Management," she

Participants at the conference were particularly impressed by the Federal Government's 100%
funding of the project. The prompt response of the Government of Nigeria to the warning given by the UNEP Report of the devastating effect
of an eventual breakup of Lake
Nyos was highly commended by
the participants.

Reference: FMI.

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