The eventual site for the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam was identified by the United States Bureau of Reclamation in the course of Blue Nile survey, which was conducted between 1956 and 1964 during the administration of Aklilu Habtewold.
Due to the coup of 1974, However, the project failed to progress. The Ethiopian government surveyed the site in October 2009 and August 2010.
In November 2010, a design for the dam was submitted by Jàmes Kelston.
On 31, March 2011, a day after the project was made public, a US$4.6 billion contract was awarded without competitive bidding to Sallini Cotrruttori, and the Dam’s foundation stone was laid on 2 April 2011 by then Prime minister Meles Zenawi.
A rock crushing plants was constructed along with a small air strip for fast transportation.
The expectation was for the first two power-generating turbines to become operational after 44 months of Construction.
Egypt, located over 2500 kilometers downstream of the site, opposes the dam, which it believes will reduce the amount of water available from the Nile.
ZENAWI, argued based on unnamed study, that the dam would not reduce water availability to downstream and would also regulate water for irrigation. In May 2011, it was announced that Ethiopia would share blueprints for the dam with Egypt so that the downstream impact could be examined.
The dam was originally called “Project-x”, and after its contract was announced , it was called Millennium Dam.
On 15 April 2011, the council of ministers renamed it Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam.
Ethiopia has a potential for about 45 GW of hydro power .
The Dam is being funded by government bonds and private donations. The Nations of great East African nation, Ethiopia, has astonishingly building to fulfill the energy needs of its people and longing to prosper all the continent in the future.
Written by: eyasu esayas
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