Rwanda starts a power project aimed at generating larger scale of electricity from Lake Kivu.

26 May 2014 Rwanda is putting together a novel plan that will see them both averting a potential catastrophe and generating electricity.

Modern Ghana tells us that the company plans to double their current power output, by lifting methane from the bottom of Lake Kivu. The lake contains large volumes of a combination of Carbon dioxide and methane. This is dangerous because a sudden release could cause a lake overturn which could in turn release waves of carbon dioxide that would suffocate people and livestock.

Rwanda isn’t waiting around for this to happen however, a pilot project has generated about two megawatts of electricity from the methane in the lake and now a new plant named KivuWatt and planned by US based power company Contour Global, will see power generation on a much larger scale.

KivuWatt project’s chief, Yann Beutler explains that there will be no drilling; gas will be pumped from the lower layers of the lake that are saturated with methane, the methane will be separated and sent to a plant and the carbon dioxide will be dissolved and returned to the lake. This way, the structure, plant and animal life on the lake will be unaffected.

The project’s first phase is planned to generate over 25 megawatts of energy, with production to be multiplied four times in the second phase to 100 MW, almost doubling Rwanda’s current national production capacity of about 115 MW.

Kigali’s government, aims to more than triple access to electricity from 18 percent of the population today to 70 percent by 2017.

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