The project comprises the design, financing, construction and operation of a 44MW hydro power plant, and its ancillary infrastructure on the Bandama River near the villages of Singrobo and Ahouaty in Côte d’Ivoire.
The Project’s hydropower facilities comprise:
- On the right bank, a rockfill dam with a permeability layer measuring approximately 27m in height and 1025m in length
- On the left bank, a concrete dam measuring approximately 27m in height and 150m in length
- At the centre, a spillway, water intake structure and bottom outlet
- A reservoir with a maximum area of 20 km2 and a volume of approximately 105 hm3
- Two penstocks with a diameter of 5m
- A power house with two 22 MW horizontal Kaplan turbines
- A 1.3 km long and 35 m wide tailrace channel
- A 3 km access road
- Camp site facilities comprising construction facilities and a permanent O&M camp site
- A 4km transmission line and substation to connect to the Singrobo-Ahouaty hydropower plant to the existing Taabo-Agboville transmission line
The hydropower facility will be built over a period of 3 years using a two-staged river diversion scheme. Its annual electricity production is expected to be 217 GWh.
The project is structured around a 35-year Build, Own, Operate and Transfer (BOOT) concession agreement signed with the State of Côte d’Ivoire. It is financed through a limited recourse project finance scheme. The project has reached financial close in December 2018.
This type of structure, known as IPP, makes it possible to mobilize the development, design, construction and operating capacities of the private sector. Financing is also provided by the private sector, which makes it possible to limit the recourse to public debt. The optimal sharing of risks between private and public sector allows an efficient implementation of the project.
The project is justified from a technical, economical, environmental and social perspective.
Firstly, from a technical perspective, the Project benefits from:
- Exceptional proximity to both electric grid and road network. The dam is located less than 4km away from each of the Abidjan-Yamoussoukro highway and the electric transmission line.
- Presence of upstream dams in Taabo and Kossou, allowing an optimized management of hydraulic resources on the Bandama river.
- 35 years of hydrology data—23 km upstream of the project site
Secondly, from an economic perspective:
- The project is part of the Ivorian government’s strategy to achieve a 42% share of renewable energy by 2030. It is the only hydro IPP in the country to progress to construction stage among a dozen of initiatives.
- The project has a competitive cost-reflective structure tariff. From day one, the tariff is competitive with other greenfield renewable power generation projects. It also entails a substantial step-down after debt repayment to become the-most-competitive IPP in country.
- The project is also expected to operate during daily peak times (from 6pm to 12pm), displacing expensive peak-time diesel production.
Thirdly, from an environmental and social impact perspective:
- With only 2 households physically displaced, the Project was designed to minimize social impacts. Nevertheless, 290 households will be economically displaced on a permanent basis, essentially farmers and land owners and 438 households will be economically displaced on a temporary basis (essentially fishermen).
- The project is the only hydropower project in Cote d’Ivoire that was developed in accordance with IFC Performance Standards and African Development Bank Operational Safeguards. It is the first hydropower project in Cote d’Ivoire to compensate temporary impact on fishing activities, to include an ecological flow and to prepare a Biodiversity Action Plan designed to ensure net gains on critical habitats.
- The increase of renewable energy in the national energy mix will reduce CO2 emissions by about 124 thousand tons per annum. The Project is also developing a Community Development Plan.