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What is a Dam?

A Dam is a structure built across a stream or a river to hold water back. Dams can be used to store water, control flooding and generate electricity.
Source   https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/dams/

Where are KenGen Hydro Power Plants located?

  • Turkwel in the North Rift
  • Sondu Miriu and Sangaro in Kisumu County
  • Gogo in Migori County
  • Sosiani in Uasin Gishu County near Eldoret Town
    (The above form the Western Region)
  • Mesco, Wanjii and Tana near Muranga Town
  • Sagana near Nyeri Town
    (The above form the Upper Tana Region)
  • The Seven Forks Dams comprising Masinga, Kamburu, Gitaru, Kindaruma and Kiambere are located in Eastern Kenya (Embu, Machakos and Kitui counties).

 Why are the Seven Forks famous in Kenya?

  •  They are among the oldest hydroelectric dams and the biggest in the country.  For many years, they were the main source of electric power for the country.

 Why the name Seven Forks?

  • Between Gitaru and Kindaruma the river splits into seven tributaries, hence the name Seven Forks.
  • The name Seven Forks has nothing do with seven dams but the tributaries.

Does KenGen open up the dams when they are full to release excess water?

  • No, the dams naturally overflow whenever they fill up. The overflows are always due to heavy rains in the Tana River Catchment.

Are hydro-power dams responsible for flooding experienced by communities living downstream?

  • No.  The dams lessen flooding downstream by holding huge volumes of water which could naturally have gone downstream.
  • No. Besides generating power, the other reason for building the dams was to regulate water flow and mitigate flooding downstream. However, once the dams are full, any excess water flows out.

What are maximum  dam water levels?

Dams

Meters Above Sea Level (M.A.S.L)

Turkwel

1150.00

Masinga

1056.50

Kamburu

1006.50

Gitaru

924.50

Kindaruma

781.10

Kiambere

700.00

How many hydro-power stations does KenGen operate?

  • KenGen operates fourteen (14) power stations namely Turkwel, Sondu-Miriu, Sangoro, Sosiani, Mesco, Wanji, Gogo, Tana, Sagana, Masinga, Kamburu, Kindaruma, Gitaru and Kiambere.  The table below contains details about the power stations

Dam

Location

Year of Installation

Installed Capacity

Turkwel

Border of West Pokot & Turkana Counties

1991

106MW

Sondu

Kisumu County

1997

60MW

Sang’oro

Cascade Power Station from Sondu Miriu Power Station

2012

33.2MW

Tana

Murangá County

2011

20MW

Sosiani

Uasin Gishu County

1952

0.4MW

Wanjii

Murang’á County

1952

5.4MW

Mesco

Murang’á County

2013

0.43

Gogo

Migori County

1957

2MW

Sagana

Sagana River

1956

1.5MW

Masinga

Seven Forks Dam Cascade

1981

40M

Kamburu

Seven Forks Dam Cascade

1974

94.20

Gitaru

Seven Forks Dam Cascade

1978

225MW**

Kindaruma

Seven Forks Dam Cascade

1968

72MW**

Kiambere

Seven Forks Dam Cascade

1988

168MW

IS the Aberdares the only catchment for River Tana?

  • No. There is a big catchment which feeds rivers joining River Tana after Kiambere including Thura-Ena, Mutonga and Kathita.

What is KenGen’s total hydro-electric capacity?    818MW

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