Ethiopia is the source of the Blue Nile. The Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) is the newest project which holding a lot of promise for development for the Ethiopians. Last week, media houses reported that the government of Ethiopia had started filling the dam. However, the state played it down. However, on 21 July the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and two Ministers (Gedu Andargachew and Seleshi Bekele) officially confirmed that the dam was being filled as reported.
The dream of Ethiopia becoming self-sufficient in terms of energy supply is now turning into a reality.
GERD dam is 560 in height but due to heavy rains, it was filled within days. The Nile has plenty of water which can benefit all nations downstream. Currently the dam contains 4.9 billion cubic meters of water which is what is needed during the first phase of operations.
Within the year, two turbines will be put into work to generate 375 MW each. The entire dam is expected to be completed by 2023.
The colonial masters signed treaties in 1929 and in 1959 modified them giving Egypt 55.5 billion cubic meters of water from the Nile while Sudan was allocated 18.5 billion cubic meters. Ethiopia which is the source of Blue Nile was never a party of such treaties. Egypt was also granted a veto right against establishing water projects along the Nile.
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