Social impact assessment of the upgrading of the Olushandja Dam in northern Namibia

Master Thesis


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University of Cape Town

The Olushandja Dam, which is situated in the Omusati region in northern Namibia, serves as a balancing and storage dam for water supplied from the Calueque Dam, on the Cunene River. Olushandja Dam forms an important component of the bulk water supply network. The Namibian Department of Water Affairs (DWA), the proponent of the project, aims to upgrade the Olushandja Dam, with the objective of increasing the surety of water supply to the regions of northern Namibia. The upgrading of the Olushandja Dam involves the repair of the north wall pump station and the installation of two pumps, with a combined pumping capacity of 3.2m3/s. A complete set of stand-by pumps will also be provided to optimise the surety of supply. The impact of upgrading the dam will be in terms of management, rather than construction or development, as the construction related to the upgrading will be minor. A sound management strategy is required to maximise the benefits of an assured water supply, while minimising the negative effects on the communities living in close proximity to the dam.

Bibliography: leaves 133-137.