Guinea is set to construct a 40MW hydroelectric dam in the city of Pita in the western part of the country. Nicolas Sureau, Director of the Department of Development and Studies for Eiffage’s international projects made the announcement and said that the French construction group have presented the feasibility study for the project.
The project dubbed the ‘Pitia Dam‘ will sit on Fétoré, a tributary of the Kakrima River. Construction is projected to take 6 years and will cost approximately US $92.3m. The hydropower dam will be combined with solar energy for permanent operation.
“This project takes into account a large number of environmental and social data and will help to optimise the cost of energy production in Guinea. Considering that it will be a seasonal dam, which will only operate for 6 months of the year during the rainy season, the idea of a hybrid dam has been put forward. And if we build a dam that only operates six months of the year, it is better to plan a solar power plant nearby that will take over from hydropower during the dry season,” said Nicolas Sureau.
Energy status in Guinea
Guinea has considerable renewable energy resources, particularly for hydroelectricity of which around 4740MW of potential has been detected with the gross theoretical capability estimated at 26,000 GWh/year. The energy demand in Guinea is projected to raise considerably.
According to government’s forecast, additional capacity between 535 and 1838MW would be necessary by 2025. There are however a number of challenges in the sector, including unending load shedding, inadequate distribution networks, with a loss rate of 49%. This has resulted to the country facing low national electrification rate of 26.2%. Access to electricity in rural areas is only 2.9% compared to 74.2% in urban areas according to the World Bank’s report.