Tanzania launches campaign for alternative energy

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Tanzanian authorities on Monday launched a campaign aimed at mobilizing people to use alternative energy, including using gas for cooking, to stop deforestation…reports Asian Lite News

January Makamba, the Minister for Energy, said the first phase of the campaign will be done in 38 districts in 14 regions where poor families that use firewood for cooking will be given cooking gas cylinders free of charge, Xinhua news agency reported.

Addressing public rallies in Butiama, Musoma and Bunda districts in Mara region at the start of the campaign, Makamba said the government will reduce levies imposed on gas to make it affordable to poor households.

The minister added that about 22,000 people die in the country annually from respiratory ailments caused by the use of firewood and charcoal.

According to state-run Tanzania Forest Services Agency (TFS), Tanzania has approximately 39.9 percent of forest cover but the country has an annual deforestation rate of about 1 percent, which is around 400,000 hectares.

TFS says between 1990 and 2010, Tanzania lost 19.4 percent of its forested land, or around 8 million hectares.

Zambia-Tansania oil pipe

Construction works on a second oil pipeline connecting Zambia and Tanzania have started, a Zambian government official said on Tuesday.

Peter Kapala, the Minister of Energy, said construction of the pipeline has already begun with the building of a 700 km segment on the Tanzanian side.

He said the two governments recently firmed up modalities to operationalize the whole framework of the project and that the new pipeline will soon start pumping diesel into Zambia.

He said in a statement that the Zambian side was in the final stages of finalizing the financing mechanism for the project with phase one expected to cost 250 million U.S. dollars and 300 million U.S. dollars to complete.

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The total project cost for the two countries has been estimated at 1.5 billion U.S. dollars, he added.

“This will consequently reduce transportation costs and hence sustainably reduce the pump price of diesel, which is currently at a record high,” he said.

The countries already share the Tanzania-Zambia Mafuta (TAZAMA) pipeline, a 1,710 km pipeline that has been transporting raw crude oil material for refining from the Port of Dar-es-Salaam in Tanzania to Indeni Petroleum Refinery in Zambia’s Ndola town.

According to the minister, the new pipeline will run alongside the old one and will be more modernized and mostly subterranean for security reasons.

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