Mon. Jul 22nd, 2024

The Benefit of the Ethiopian Renaissance Dam to Sudan and Egypt


The construction of the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) brings numerous benefits to Sudan and Egypt, including managing sedimentation in the Nile River. Without the dam, the total sedimentation rate in the region is estimated to be 136.5 million tons per annum, which can cause sediment buildup in the riverbed and reduce water flow capacity. With GERD, the sedimentation rate is significantly reduced to 19 million tons per annum, representing an 86% reduction. The highest reduction occurs between February and September when water levels are highest.

The GERD project also helps regulate water flow, control floods, and conserve water in Sudan and Egypt. By storing water during the rainy season and releasing it during the dry season, the dam can prevent flooding downstream and ensure a more reliable water supply throughout the year. The GERD also reduces evaporation loss at the Aswan High Dam (AHD) by 6 to 16 billion cubic meters (BCM) per year and decreases average spillage to the desert from 10 to 15 BCM with the presence of GERD.

In addition, GERD’s reservoir provides increased water storage in the Ethiopian highlands, which improves water savings and establishes a water bank for severe drought. The reservoir also enables the creation of a regional power market, stabilizes the energy mix, buffers the effects of climate change by reducing emissions, and increases the share of renewable energy sources in the energy mix.

The GERD can serve as a significant contribution to interconnection lines with neighboring countries such as Egypt, Merowe, Khartoum, Eritrea, Yemen, Djibouti, Berbera, Roseries, Somaliland, and Sudan. These lines create a regional energy network that can strengthen energy security in the region and promote economic development.

Sedimentation management is one of the major benefits of the GERD for Sudan and Egypt. By trapping sediment in the upstream reservoir, the dam can reduce the amount that reaches downstream countries and mitigate the negative effects of sedimentation. This can also improve the water quality downstream, leading to more sustainable use of water resources in these countries.

Water conservation is another benefit of the GERD for Sudan and Egypt. By reducing the amount of water lost to evaporation and spillage in the upstream reservoir, the dam can increase water conservation in these countries. This can help to ensure a more reliable water supply throughout the year, especially during droughts.

The GERD can also serve as a water bank for severe droughts in the region, releasing water from the reservoir to supplement water supplies downstream. This can help to prevent water shortages during droughts and improve the livelihoods of communities in the region.

Finally, the GERD can promote sustainable development by stabilizing the energy mix and increasing the use of renewable energy sources. By providing a reliable source of renewable energy to Ethiopia and the region, the dam can reduce dependence on fossil fuels and promote economic growth while mitigating the effects of climate change.

Article by Asrat Birhanu

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By Chala Dandessa

I am Lecturer, Researcher and Freelancer. I am the founder and Editor at ETHIOPIANS TODAY website. If you have any comment use as email contact. Additionally you can contact us through the contact page of

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