NamPower is advancing the development of its proposed 40MW Otjikoto Biomass Power Station and has issued bidding documents to locate an engineering procurement and construction (EPC) contractor for the power station.
The power station, to be located 15km from Tsumeb and estimated to cost N$2 billion, will be owned and operated by NamPower.
Bidding for the project closes at 10am, Namibian time, on 17 November 2023.
The Otjikoto Biomass Power Station will generate electricity from encroacher bush wood chips harvested from the nearby encroacher bush, and it will address energy security, affordability and environmental sustainability.
It forms part of NamPower’s Integrated Strategy and Business Plan and is a result of a decision taken by the Ministry of Mines and Energy in 2018, which outlined new generation plants to be developed by NamPower and Independent Power Producers (IPPs), to add to the country’s generation capacity. The biomass power plant supports national policies such as the Harambee Prosperity Plan II (HPPII), the National Development Plans and the Renewable Energy Policy, which targets the sourcing of 70% of Namibia’s energy from renewable energy sources by 2030.
Furthermore, the Otjikoto Biomass Power project is seen as contributing towards achieving the energy policy’s self-sufficiency targets of 80% in the near future.
The biomass power project will enhance the security of energy supply by introducing an alternative electricity supply option. Longer term objectives are to stimulate and promote a local biomass fuel supply chain, to increase environmental sustainability and to restore biodiversity.
The power station will assist NamPower to strengthen its domestic local generation mix and further stabilise the national power grid with a fully dispatchable energy source which could provide baseload energy.
The biomass power station will assist in combatting bush encroachment with tangible benefits to the Namibian agricultural sector, such as improved livestock carrying capacities through increased rangelands and agricultural productivity, increased groundwater within the harvested areas, displaced carbon dioxide emissions to the benefit of the region, contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Namibia and direct and indirect job creation throughout the fuel supply chain and the operation of the power station.
The first large-scale biomass power station will also prove the concept for future project duplication across Namibia in areas heavily infested with invader bush.
The Namibia Biomass industry Group (N-BiG) supported the development of the macro-economic study for the development of the Otjikoto Biomass Power Plant and continues to support follow up measures, such as the updating of the 2018 study.
As a result of the Feasibility Study and Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) scoping, the Oshikoto region emerged as the preferred location for the proposed biomass power station, mainly driven by the larger socioeconomic impacts, sufficiently available biomass fuel resource and existing infrastructure requirements.
In addition, the Oshikoto region will have the largest agricultural benefit from harvesting of the bush encroached areas, however, this region was also identified as the most challenging option in terms of harvesting and aftercare of the encroacher bush. Bid Documents can be accessed at: https://www.nampower.com.na/Bid.aspx?id=251726