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  • Ethiopia's bubble is not bursting - CNN

    (CNN) - After a decade of rapid growth, Ethiopia's bubble is not bursting.

    Dubbed the 'African Lion' by economists, Ethiopia is the home of booming industry, new infrastructure, and showpiece summits. It has become a powerful force in the region and beyond.

    To maintain this golden age, the East African state is pressing ahead with ambitious development plans, and renewable energy is core to the mission.

    Ethiopia was among the most daring signatories to the Paris Agreement on climate change, committing to cut carbon emissions by 64% by 2030. The government has ploughed billions of dollars into hydropower megaprojects such as the Grand Renaissance Dam -- which will be the largest dam in Africa -- and the freshly-inaugurated Gibe III Dam.

    The next target is to become the wind power capital of Africa.


    The turbine of Ashegoda wind farm in Northern Ethiopia, which was the largest wind farm in sub-Saharan Africa when it was inaugurated in 2013. The $300 million facility represents a major step forward in Ethiopia's plans to become a renewable energy powerhouse.

    Breezing ahead

    Ethiopia inaugurated one of the continent's largest wind farms in 2013 -- the $290 million, 120-megawatt (MW) Ashedoga plant. This was followed by the even larger 153 MW Adama II facility in 2015.

    But wind accounted for just 324 MW of Ethiopia's total output of 4,180 MW at the end of 2015, with the vast majority coming from hydropower.

    This picture is set to change with the government's second "Growth and Transformation Plan," which will see total output pass 17,000 MW by 2020, and a vastly increased share from the air.

    The government has plans for at least five further wind farms, and potentially many more, aiming to deliver up to 5,200 megawatts from wind power within four years. The cost is officially calculated at $3.1 billion, although other estimates place it over $6 billion.

    "We are conducting research and studying the data to see the number of plants we can connect (to the National Grid)," says Misikir Negash, head of communications for the Ethiopian Electric Power company. "It is important to have different energy sources for a reliable system. Wind is a big focus and we need it."

    Read more at CNN

     

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  • Ethiopia inaugurates massive hydroelectric dam to double energy output

    December 17, 2016 - Ethiopia has inaugurated Gibe III, the biggest hydroelectric dam in the country with an installed capacity of 1,870 MW and the tallest of its kind in the world. Built by Salini Impregilo, it will almost double the eastern African country’s electricity production as it strives to modernize its economy and become a regional energy hub.

    Located on the Omo River 450 kilometres southwest of the capital Addis Ababa, the dam is the latest in a series being built by the country to harness its vast water supply. As the source of a number of rivers including the Blue Nile flowing from its mountains, Ethiopia is known as the “Water Tower of Africa”.

    Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn presided over the inaugural ceremony of the €1.5 billion project in the presence of Water, Irrigation and Electricity Minister Eng Sileshi Bekele, Ethiopian Electric Power Chief Executive Azeb Asnake and Ethiopian Electric Power Chairman Debretsion Gebremichael. Salini Impregilo Chief Executive Pietro Salini, General Manager International Operations Claudio Lautizi were also present. Ethiopian Electric Power commissioned the project.

    “This is a very special day for Salini Impregilo and in particular for me,” said Chief Executive Pietro Salini in a speech. “What was considered a dream – after years of hard work – has now become a reality.

    “We are grateful to Ethiopian Electric Power and the Federal and Regional Governments for dealing with us as partners in development, and for trusting our capacity for completing Gibe III. Salini Impregilo is honoured to have given service both to them and to this great nation,” he added.

    Gibe III will generate up to 6,500 GWh of electricity a year, increasing the country’s production capacity by at least 80%.

    It is an extension of a greater complex that includes two other hydroelectric dams: Gibe I and Gibe II.

    These three dams, along with the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) being built by Salini Impregilo, are the product of an ambitious programme by the country to arrive at a generation capacity of 40,000 MW by 2035.

    Gibe III is the first dam in Ethiopia to be built using roller-compacted concrete (RCC). Standing at 250 metres, it is the tallest of its kind in the world. Its crest length is 630 metres.

    The volume of concrete used to build the dam totaled 6.2 million cubic metres, two and a half times the amount of material used for the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. The water reservoir created by the dam holds 15 billion cubic metres, equal to half the volume of Lake Tana, the largest in Ethiopia.

    Gibe III has 10 Francis turbines with a combined capacity of 1,870 MW – the same amount produced by two nuclear power plants.

    The benefits of the project were already evident during its construction, contributing enormously to the local economy. It created jobs for a combined total of 20,000 Ethiopians during the various phases of its construction.  Its complexity also called for the greatest expertise in the field, involving people from 32 countries.

    The dam’s inauguration is the latest success for Salini Impregilo in Ethiopia, where it has been present for nearly 60 years.

    Press Release

     

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  • The Weeknd: "I Represent Ethiopia"

    The 26-year-old better known as The Weeknd (Abel Tesfaye), who on this Sunday in November is ­preparing to release Starboy, the follow-up to his 2015 pop breakthrough Beauty Behind the Madness -- opens up In rare Interview with Billboard about paparazzi, overcoming stage fright and his roots.

    Excerpt from Abel Tesfaye's interview with Billboard

    You’re representing for different ­places — Toronto, Ethiopia. How do you approach that?
    I made it known that I’m Ethiopian. I put it in my music, and my style of singing is very Ethiopian-inspired. I’ve never even been there. I’d love to go home and see my roots.

    Where would you direct a Weeknd fan in terms of Ethiopian music?
    Aster Aweke, for sure. You can hear her voice at the end of “False Alarm” on the new album. Her voice is the greatest thing you’ll ever hear. There’s a great composer named Mulatu Astatke, he’s probably the most famous Ethiopian musician right now. Jim Jarmusch used his music. I’d love to meet him and work with him somehow. Mahmoud Ahmed is a great singer, and so is Tilahun Gessesse. Teddy Afro is more of a pop singer, great voice. This is what I grew up on. I’d wake up in the morning, and my mom would be listening to all this stuff while she was making coffee. I’m working on University of Toronto getting its own class [on Ethiopian language studies].

    Related: The Weeknd helping resurrect a lost Ethiopian language

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  • Ethiopian Deba named rightful winner of 2014 Boston Marathon



    BOSTON (AP) -- Blood, sweat and tears stained the deadly 2013 Boston Marathon, so the next year's running of America's most famous footrace was understandably all about redemption.

    Now the rightful winner of the 2014 women's race - Buzunesh Deba - is finally getting her due.

    Race organizers formally declared the 29-year-old Ethiopian the 2014 champion on Monday, two months after Kenyan rival Rita Jeptoo was stripped of the title and banned from international competition for four years for doping.

    Sweetening the bitterness of her ordeal, Deba also was recognized as the current course record-holder. Her blistering finish of 2 hours, 19 minutes, 59 seconds made it the fastest women's race in Boston's 121-year-old history, besting the previous mark of 2:20:43 set in 2002 by Margaret Okayo of Kenya.

    "I feel great and really happy being named the 2014 Boston Marathon champion, the most prestigious marathon in the world, and I encourage all concerned stakeholders to work on a clean sport," Deba, who lives in New York City with her husband and coach, Worku Beyi, said in a statement.

    It was a long road to victory for Deba.

    Her 2014 clocking in Boston was her fastest ever over the 26.2-mile span, and it catapulted her to the top of the sport.

    But at the time, all the adulation - to say nothing of the first-prize winnings - went to Jeptoo, who was credited with the win in the first edition of the Boston Marathon since two bombs planted at the finish line killed three spectators and wounded more than 260 others.

    The Boston Athletic Association, which organizes the marathon, says it's still working to recover the $150,000 prize and $25,000 course record bonus.

    In October, the Court of Arbitration for Sport doubled Jeptoo's initial ban to four years. The 35-year-old tested positive for EPO in a September 2014 sample given during training for the Chicago Marathon. She's since been stripped of the 2014 Chicago title as well.

    "Buzunesh Deba's sub-2:20 performance in 2014 was a magnificent achievement," BAA chief executive Tom Grilk said Monday. "To emerge victorious in the fastest women's race ever run in Boston was remarkable. We look forward to awarding her the praise she rightfully deserves in 2017."

    Deba hasn't yet said whether she'll race Boston next year.

    source:

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  • Ethiopian Airlines recognized as one of Africa’s top employers

    Africa’s largest airline group, Ethiopian Airlines, is pleased to announce that it has been awarded Africa Best Employer Brand and Business Leadership Excellence Awards  at the 3rd Edition of AFRICA BEST EMPLOYER BRAND AWARDS ceremony held in Mauritius on December 06, 2016.

    AFRICA BEST EMPLOYER BRAND AWARDS recognizes top organizations across Africa, who have demonstrated excellence in building the Employer Brand, through a distinct identity that is visible through HR practices; polices & strategy as an Employer of Choice. 

    The ‘Business Leadership Excellence Award’ was given to Ethiopian Group CEO in recognition of his leadership excellence while the ‘African Best Employer Brand Award 2016’ was given in recognition of the valuable contribution Ethiopian is making to be the most sought after employer.

    While receiving the award, A/VP Corporate HRM, Ethiopian Group, Mr. Mesay Shiferaw, remarked, “We are sincerely honoured to receive the Africa Best Employer Brand andBusiness Leadership Excellence Awards  and wish to thank the organizers and the jury for recognizing Ethiopian and our Group CEO, Mr. Tewole GebreMariam, for his  excellence in leadership. Human Resource Development being one of the core pillars of our long term growth plan, vision 2025, we are continuously nurturing HR practices, standard work ethics and values that help us achieve our targets. To this end, Ethiopian Aviation Academy is playing a paramount role in producing and fostering future leaders of the aviation industry. We shall continue to invest in training and empowering our employees with the required skill and knowledge to keep Ethiopian on a fast growth trajectory.”


    Investing over USD$ 100 million to revamp the academy, Ethiopian Aviation Academy is currently the largest and the most advanced center of excellence in developing skilled workforce not only for Ethiopian Airlines but also the wider African aviation industry.

     

    Ethiopian has won several prestigious awards including Airline of the Year Award, for the fifth consecutive year, by African Airlines Association (AFRAA), SkyTrax World Airline Award for Best Airline Staff in Africa and Passenger Choice Awards for Best Airline in Africa.

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