In the first months of 2020 and up to now, due to impacts of the El Nino phenomenon, the hydrological situation across the country, the Central Highlands in general and the Srepok River basin and hydropower plants of the Buon Kuop Hydropower Company in particular is unfavorable. The water flow to reservoirs is always lower than the average water flow to reservoirs for many years, this affects on the power production plan. The operation, production and regulation of water sources for the downstream areas have suffered many difficulties; however, the Company has always ensured the safety and met demands of the National Load Dispatch Centre for the sufficient water supply for the downstream areas.
The Buon Tua Srah Reservoir under the management and operation of Buon Kuop Hydropower Company is an upstream reservoir regulating water sources for the entire Srepok River. Currently, the water source in the basin of Buon Tua Srah Reservoir continues to be dried up, the water flow to this reservoir is extremely low (around 15 m3/s), lower than the same period last year and compared to the average water flow of many years. As a result, the water level of Buon Tua Srah Reservoir has been decreased rapidly to the dead water level. The water level at 18 p.m. on May 22 was 466,587m that was higher than the dead water level (465m) of 1,587m, and the water source stored up in the reservoir is insignificant; while the dry season still lasts more than a month. This is a serious difficulty for operating the reservoir to ensure the water supply for the downstream areas.
The low water level of the reservoir of Buon Tua Srah Hydropower Plant.
Experience has shown that the operation of downstream hydropower plants and water use demands for the agricultural production in localities along the Srepok River and downstream areas of Buon Tua Srah Reservoir are mainly subject to the regulation of Buon Tua Srah Reservoir.
Right from the beginning of the dry season, to ensure the water supply for downstream areas during the dry season of 2020, Buon Kuop Hydropower Company has actively cooperated with districts along the Srepok River and downstream areas of the Plant to monthly update water use demands of localities. Thence proposing to the National Load Dispatch Centre to operate plant units and water sources according to optimal plans in order to guarantee the water supply for downstream areas and efficient power generation.
In addition, Buon Kuop Hydropower Company regularly cooperates and supports localities in the downstream areas of Buon Tua Srah Hydropower Plant in regulating the reservoir to increase water supply sources for the downstream areas in periods that a high water volume is required for the agricultural production. The Company has also timely planned a reasonable price offering for the operation of plant units for the purpose of supply sufficient water sources for the cultivation of local people.
In spite of such difficulties, during the past time, Buon Kuop Hydropower Company has operated Buon Tua Srah Reservoir in compliance with regulations of the Inter-reservoir operating procedures on the Srepok River. As a result, the Company's power output from the beginning of the year to May 25, 2020 is over 430 million kWh, reaching 18.1% of the year plan (2.379 billion kWh).
The spillway of Buon Tua Srah Hydropower Plant is dried up since April 2020.
To guarantee the highest operating efficiency of the reservoir, the Buon Kuop Hydropower Company has set up a 24/24h hotline number for all 3 plants managed and operated by the Company, available to receive feedbacks of local people living in the downstream areas of plants. At the same time, the Company has also developed a website so that local governments and local people living in the downstream areas can monitor the operation and halt in the real time, since then localities may be active in implementing the irrigation and transport of goods across the river.
Buon Kuop Hydropower Company always keeps track of the weather situation in the basins and the hydrological condition of the reservoir, thence updating the water use demand of localities to propose to the National Load Dispatch Centre (A0) to operate the Buon Tua Srah Reservoir to meet irrigation demands in the downstream while ensuring the efficient power generation.
According to judgement of the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting, the ElNino phenomenon will be declined gradually and maintained a neutral situation, the water flow in most of rivers in the Central Vietnam and Central Highlands will be generally lower than the average water flow of many years. The drought situation will be continuous; therefore the rainfall and water flow to reservoirs are still low. However, Buon Kuop Hydropower Company in general and Buon Tua Srah Hydropower Plant in particular will try to regulate reservoirs in accordance with the Inter-reservoir operating procedures, meeting water use demands for living and agricultural production for localities in the downstream areas of Buon Tua Srah Reservoir.