Dams_ KwaZuluNatal

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MIdmar Dam, MIdmar mile, KwaZulu Natal

There are >915 dams in KwaZulu-Natal with a capacity > 20 222m3  (domestic, industrial, irrigation, stock watering)

Albert Falls Dam

The Albert Falls Dam is surrounded by a nature reserve which covers an area of 3012 ha.

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
1976289Gravity and ArchMgeni River

Hazelmere Dam

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall TypeRiver
197717.8Concrete GravityMdloti River

Midmar Dam

For the past 44 years, the Midmar Mile swimming race is held, which is called “the world’s largest open water swimming event”.

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
1965 and refurbished 2003235Earth fill (flanks); Concrete gravityMgeni river

Ntshingwayo Dam

Ntshingwayo Dam (previously known as Chelmsford Dam) which was completed in 1961 and raised in 1982. . The dam was built to supply water to the town of Newcastle, Eskom’s thermal power station and irrigation farmers downstream. Releases are sometimes made to dilute factory spillages that end up in the river system.

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
1961211Gravity ArchIngagane

Notes: Previously the Chelmsford Dam. Refer to the speech by THE MINISTER OF WATER AFFAIRS AND FORESTRY, RONNIE KASRILS, MP, AT THE RENAMING OF THE CHELMSFORD DAM TO NTSHINGWAYO DAM, Newcastle, 6 August 2000, “Inkosi Ntshingwayo kaMahole Khoza was a senior general in King Cetshwayo’s army and the hereditary chief of the Khoza in north-western Zululand. Born in 1809, he was a chief in the tradition of Shaka and must indeed have known that great leader. His high rank in the kingdom and his recognised abilities as a warrior made him a natural choice as a senior commander. At this stage, you are probably picturing a young and virile man, strong of limb and full of youthful daring. In fact, at the time of the battle of Isandlwana, Ntshingwayo was a remarkable 70 years old. He died, not in the peace of his home, but at the Battle of Ulundi, defending his King, country and people.”

Pongolapoort Dam

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
19732445Arch type damPhongola

Notes: Until work started on the Gariep Dam in 1966, Pongolapoort was the largest dam under construction in South Africa. It is a medium thin, double curvature arch dam with a gradual transition towards a gravity thrust block on the left flank. It has a maximum height of 89 m and a crest length of 515 m. The dam has a controlled and an uncontrolled spillway. The gross capacity of the reservoir is 2 500 million m3, which is more than twice the mean annual runoff. The chute spillways have a combined capacity of 2 010 m3 at high flood level. The thickness of the wall above the cushion is 18,3 m tapering to 8,2 m at the spillway and then flowing to 11 m to carry a road across it.

Quedusizi Dam

The purpose of Qedusizi Dam is to reduce the risk of flooding of the low-lying areas of  Ladysmith against floods.

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
1998194EarthfillKlip river

Notes: The Qedusizi Dam will initially have flood attenuation capabilities only. The 32 m high dam is designed in such a way that the flood water from the Klip River and the Sand Spruit will be stored temporarily. The impounded water will be released at a controlled rate taking into account the safe carrying capacity of the Klip River through Ladysmith whilst at the same time taking due cognizance of the effects of flooding from the intermediate catchment, mainly the Flagstone Spruit. The dam will remain empty for most of the time, i.e. between flood events.

Spioenkop Dam

Constructed to regulate flow downstream of the Driel Barrage to mitigate the effect of the transfer scheme. The dam also supplies water to Ladysmith and supports water requirements for the farmers between the dam and the confluence of the Little Thukela River. Releases are also occasionally called for to dilute the effluent discharged by Sappi into the lower Thukela near the river mouth. The Tugela-Mhlathuze Water Transfer Scheme at Middeldrift can also be supported from Spioenkop Dam if necessary.

ConstructedCapacity (mil.cub.m)Wall typeRiver
1973272Earth fillTugela River

Notes: Spioenkop Dam is surrounded by grassland and acacia bushveld. Refering to Southern African Birding, a reserve at the dam of 6000 Ha (run by Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife) has a very interesting bird list of 307 species, and one should be able to tick more than 100 in a good summer day’s birding. It is situated 13Km from Winterton and 35Km from Ladysmith.

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