Zambia’s Maamba Collieries has relocated water pumps to a new location in the Kariba lake, to provide water for the boilers of its 300 MW coal-fired power plant.
The company said in a release on Friday that this was necessitated by falling water levels in the Kariba lake.
Maamba operates two 150 MW power generating units, each consuming 9 000 m3/d of water when running at full capacity.
The company attributed the low water levels in the area to low rainfall during the last wet season in the country.
“Installing the pumps at a deeper location was not easy in crocodile- and hippo-infested waters, as these had to be kept at bay as men worked in knee-deep waters. We often had to seek the assistance of wildlife wardens to ensure safety,” said mining manager Scott Phiri.
The pump relocation was done within three weeks, with temporary power lines and substations having been set up, as well as a road created to transfer the two 132 kW pumps.
Maamba supplies 10% of Zambia’s current installed electricity generation capacity.