Ruaha River Power Company Limited (“Ruaha Power”) has announced that Ritoch-Powell & Associates (RPA), a Phoenix, Arizona based engineering consulting firm has been selected to undertake a feasibility study for a cascading series of run-of-river hydropower projects on the Lukosi River in central Tanzania. The feasibility study is being partially funded by a US $600,000 grant from the US Trade Development Agency (“USTDA”) under the Power Africa Program. Ruaha Power has conducted preliminary studies on the Lukosi River which suggest the facilities have the potential to generate a combined output of approximately 20MW of power. The hydropower project forms a part of the Ruaha Power’s integrated rural electrification strategy that includes grid and non-grid connected renewable energy based solutions (solar, hydropower, biomass) in the Morogoro and Iringa regions.
The RPA team has reviewed Ruaha Power’s preliminary studies and will launch the intensive in-country site work in late September. Ritoch-Powell & Associates and Ruaha Power executives will be meeting with equipment manufacturers, investors, and other stakeholders in Columbus, Ohio in late August to plan the field work and establish preliminary commercialization timelines and strategies.
Ruaha Power’s CFO John Tate commented on the selection, “We evaluated several qualified engineering firms to undertake the study. The professionalism, responsiveness, and customer focus displayed by the RPA team made the decision easy. Ritoch-Powell & Associates President, Karl Obergh, Vice-President, Pete Hemingway, and the entire RPA organization have shown a level of commitment and dedication to the renewable energy sector in East Africa that is impressive. We are in discussions with Pete Hemingway on several additional hydropower and solar projects and expect our business relationship to lead to the launch of several commercially viable renewable energy projects in Tanzania.”
Karl Obergh, added, “Our first project in East Africa was a hydropower plant in Rwanda which we undertook in December 2014. The design work has been completed and construction is expected to begin later this year. When John contacted me about the Lukosi Project in early 2015, I was convinced that development of the renewable energy sector in East Africa represented a business opportunity our company needed to explore. After visiting both countries I experienced first-hand the enormous untapped renewable energy potential in the region. Couple that with a vast underserved rural market that is starved for power, and you have a powerful combination of business and market factors that represent a solid business opportunity. We look forward to working with John and his team on this important and impactful project.”