bujagali hydropower project


The Bujagali Hydropower Project("Bujagali") is a 250-megawatt power-generating facility on the Victoria Nile River near the Town of Jinja in Uganda. The project is owned by Bujagali Energy Limited ("BEL"), a project-specific company with the following shareholders: Industrial Promotion Services (Kenya) Limited; SG Bujagali Holdings Ltd, an affiliate of Sithe Global Power, LLC (USA); and, the Government of Uganda ("GOU").

The hydropower project has produced and continues to produce substantial benefits for Uganda and for citizens living in the area of the facility. BEL continues to work closely with the GOU and village leaders to improve the well-being of local residents while preserving local customs and cultures.

Producing much-needed electricity

At the time of Bujagali's commissioning, Uganda had a severe shortage of electricity. Many electricity consumers regularly experienced rotating blackouts of up to 12-24 hours daily. This lack of power negatively impacted the Ugandan economy and its citizens because, in many areas, electricity was being produced by expensive and air polluting stand-by power generators that have now been displaced by Bujagali.

Bujagali produces an abundant supply of clean, renewable energy for Ugandan homes and businesses. The facility uses the power of falling water from a 30 m high earth and rock-filled dam to generate electricity. Due to Bujagali's location, it doubles the efficiency of the water use from Lake Victoria given the water now flows through two hydropower plants in series (i.e. Bujagali and Owens Falls). Major project components include:

  • Power station housing five electric-generating turbines totaling 250 MWs
  • Dam and associated spillways
  • 388 ha water reservoir, most of which (308 ha) had already been covered by the Victoria Nile

As the project sponsor, BEL is committed to environmental excellence. See Environmental Responsibility for information about the extensive measures BEL has implemented to protect the environment in areas affected by the project.

Substantial benefits for Ugandans

Bujagali has produced the following economic and social benefits:

  • Increased supply of reliable electricity and eliminated load-shedding (Bujagali provides 46% of generation in Uganda)
  • Reduced the marginal cost of power by over 66%, reducing the cost to Uganda's power utility by over $280 million in the first year alone
  • Eliminated the need for huge subsidies to end user tariffs that cost Uganda $180 million per year and to channel these savings toward other crucial public-sector investment
  • Improved air quality by reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 1 million tons per annum and reducing pollutants such as NOx, SOx and particulate matter
  • Jobs and training for Ugandan workers (creation of over 3,000 new jobs during peak construction) and credited with substantially contributing to the creation of c.200,000 jobs across the country within 2 years of its commissioning (LINK)
  • Improved community services (e.g., water supply, electrical distribution networks, education, micro-finance program and health facilities in nearby villages)
  • Social improvement programs such as livelihood restoration and agriculture enhancement

For additional information, click on Economic & Social Benefits

Global Benefits

Bujagali reduces carbon dioxide emissions in Uganda by 1 million tons per annum. Hydropower electricity does not cause emissions of the greenhouse gas CO2 and other pollutants. Prior to Bujagali, a significant portion of electricity in Uganda was generated by diesel and fuel oil generators that emitted considerable volumes of CO2. The electricity produced by the Bujagali Hydropower Project replaced the diesel and fuel oil electricity and hence reduce CO2 emissions that contribute to climate change.

Extensive review by Government and Lenders

BEL filed a draft "Social and Environmental Assessment" (SEA) for the hydropower project with the GOU and prospective project lenders in December 2006. The SEA underwent a comprehensive review by Uganda's National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) and by project lenders including The World Bank, European Investment Bank, African Development Bank and others.

The purpose of the SEA process was to ensure the proposed facility is designed and developed to maximize its benefits while minimizing potentially negative social and environmental effects. The project complies with strict environmental and other regulatory requirements.

Following their extensive review, the Ugandan government and project lenders approved the project in April 2007. Bujagal achieved financial closing in December 2007 and commenced commercial operations in August 2012.

Project sponsors

BEL is a project-specific company comprised of Industrial Promotion Services (Kenya) Limited and SG Bujagali Holdings Ltd, an affiliate of Sithe Global Power, LLC (USA) and the GOU. See About Us for more information.

In the late 1990s, a similar project was initiated by AES Nile Power Ltd (AESNP). When that company withdrew, the GOU -- with support from The World Bank -- conducted an international competitive bidding process and selected BEL as the preferred bidder. BEL is not associated with the previous sponsor (AESNP).

Community involvement invited

Our project team continues to conduct an extensive community engagement program to ensure an open, collaborative review process with interested stakeholders. We have developed and implemented a comprehensive public consultation & disclosure program to: 1) increase community awareness of the project and 2) provide opportunities for community input and involvement. See Public Consultation for more information.

Please click on Key Project Documents for detailed project documents on file with the GOU. The documents may also be viewed at our offices (addresses follow).

Bujagali Energy Limited
8 Kms Kayunga Road
P.O. Box 186
Kikubamutwe, Uganda
Tel: +256-434-132532/3