South Sudan: Agreement with Cairo for the Wau Dam Feasibility Study
South Sudan will work with Egypt to carry out feasibility studies for the Wau Dam project in the south of the country. The infrastructure will provide water for irrigation for 500,000 people.
The Wau Dam project in South Sudan is progressing. The South Sudanese government has just signed a memorandum of understanding with Egypt to carry out feasibility studies for the infrastructure, which will be built near the town of Wau.
This work will complement integrated technical and economic studies carried out at the project site in 2015 by the Egyptian Ministry of Water Resources and Irrigation, in collaboration with Egypt’s National Water Research Centre (NWRC). This includes hydrological and hydraulic studies, as well as surveying and contour mapping for the dam site and storage lake. This is in addition to geological, geotechnical, construction and environmental studies, as well as the initial designs of the dam and its facilities.
A power transfer station for the Wau dam and accessories will also be built. Economic feasibility studies for the station were carried out by experts from the Egyptian Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy.
Water for irrigation of agricultural land
The Wau dam will be built on the Siwi River, one of the main branches of the Jur River in the Bahr al-Ghazal basin. The dam will have a storage capacity of 2 billion m3. The water from the dam will provide irrigation water for 500,000 farmers. Between 12,600 and 16,800 hectares of land are expected to be irrigated, improving resilience to drought. The Wau Dam will improve the power supply in South Sudan with a hydroelectric plant capable of delivering 64 GWh per year.
According to the government of Egypt, the agreement with South Sudan is in line with Egypt’s policy of supporting development projects to ensure stability, solve drinking water problems and protect people from the dangers of flooding in Africa. In 2015, the country of the pharaohs blocked funds for the construction of the Wau Dam, due to political wrangling between South Sudan and Sudan. The Wau irrigation project will cost $1.2 billion.