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Home The River Basin People and the River Governance Resource Management
Resource Management
Water Demand
Water Infrastructure
 Dams and Associated Infrastructure
 The Kunene River Scheme
 Infrastructure for Hydropower in Angola
Infrastructure for Water Supply
 Water Security
 Water Storage & Flow Control
 Bulk Transfer Schemes
 Groundwater Services & Infrastructure
 Irrigation Infrastructure
 Operation and Maintenance of Infrastructure
 Rehabilitation and Future Development
 Wastewater Infrastructure
The Value of Water
Resource Monitoring
Research & Development



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Infrastructure for Water Supply  

Large infrastructure to ensure water supply is generally associated with urban settlements. As the Kunene Rive basin is mainly a sparsely populated rural area there is relatively little infrastructure for water supply. However the Kunene River is an extremely important water sources for northern Namibia, where over 40% of the Namibian population live.

The existing infrastructure is detailed below:

Water Supply for Huambo

Huambo is the largest city in the basin located on the very northern edge of the Upper Kunene, straddling the watershed at the source of the river.

A part of Huambo's water supply is obtained from the Kulimahala river, a tributary to the Kunene, from which up to 1 300 m³/hour can be removed for treatment water at the Kulimahala treatment plant, which lies on the eastern edge of the town. From here the water is pumped to a series of water towers and then delivered to domestic customers and standpipes.

The operation of the Kulimahala drinking water treatment plant depends on the availability of power from the recently rehabilitated Hydroelectric Plant on the Cuando river which lies around 12 km to the south-east of the treatment plant.

The Calueque Canal and Olushandja Dam

Under the Third Agreement from 1969, Namibia has the right to abstract water from the river at Calueque up to a maximum rate of 6 m³/s. This water is then transferred via open, concrete-lined canal out of the Kunene Basin and across the border into northern Namibia and towards the Olushandja Dam. This lies just outside the Kunene basin and is an integral part of the Calueque-Oshakati Water Scheme which transports drinking water to over 700 000 people in northern Namibia, (see Bulk Transfer Schemes). The dam, completed in 1990, is some 20 km south of Calueque, and has a volume of 42 Mm³ when full (NamPower. The purpose of the dam is to balance and store water from the Calueque weir in Angola.

Of the water pumped from the river, up to 2.1 m³/s is removed for the irrigation scheme at Etunda in Namibia and the rest is used for drinking water supply. The peak demand period for drinking water is in October, when the flow of the Kunene is at its lowest. The reservoir at Olushandja therefore serves to balance this demand.

The Olushandja dam in flood.
Source: Amakali 2004
( click to enlarge )




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