Maintenance of Hydropower Potential in Rwanda Through Ecosystem Restoration: World Resources Report Case Study
Rwanda’s rapidly expanding electricity production is highly reliant on hydropower. However, hydropower as a sole source presents risks during changing global and regional hydrological conditions.
Goals & Methods
Rwanda received a taste of hydrology-related power loss when Lake Bulera reached severely depleted status in the early 2000s. In response, the government restricted drainage of the wetlands and agricultural and pastoral activities around the lake. These measures had adverse impacts on livelihoods throughout the region. The government then took additional measures such as grassland restoration and afforestation to increase pasturage; the construction of erosion control structures throughout the watershed; and the promotion of sustainable multi-enterprise farming.
Conclusions & takeaways
Protection of the watershed has supported ongoing functioning of the Ntaruka hydropower station. This crisis also led the government to diversify the national energy portfolio including the capture of methane gas from Lake Kivu; use of geothermal energy; and burning peat for electricity production.
Hove, H, Parry, J-E, Lujara, N. Maintenance of Hydropower Potential in Rwanda Through Ecosystem Restoration: World Resources Report Case Study. World Resources Report, Washington DC.
- International Institute for Sustainable Development
- Rwanda Ministry of Infrastructure