Kafue Catchment is one of Zambia’s six major Catchments; it is geographically located between 24o 42’E, 11o 30’S and 28o 30’E, 17o 30’S and covers an approximate area of 156034.386km2 representing 20% of Zambia’s total land. The main Kafue River in the Catchment meanders approximately 100Km North-East of Solwezi town to its confluence with the Zambezi River in the lower Kafue Catchment in Chirundu District of Zambia and has a total length of 1,489.904Km. The Catchment is sub divided into 2 collective basins and these are; Upper and Lower Kafue Catchments.
The land cover in the Catchment is such that; the distribution of crop-land is predominantly scattered as well as in coverage of land type. Land classification of the Upper Kafue Catchment is such that it supports less cropland which generally attributes it to poor soils and limited accessibility. On the other hand, Lower Kafue Catchment shows a predominant density of high croplands. The Kafue catchment is generally considered in the provision of high agriculture potential as it has good access to water.
Map of Kafue Catchment classification
The household siting within the Catchment is 1,296,685 representing 52% of all the households in Zambia. This means that within the 38 Districts in which the Catchment lays, there are 1,296,685 households representing an approximate total population of 6,610,594 or 50% of the Zambian total population. Besides the vast population growth in the Catchment, it has been also realized that the Kafue Catchment plays a central role in Zambia’s economy as most of the commercial and domestic water use activities lay this catchment. Several general specific water demand and water use in the Catchment also includes industrial, mining, commercial, hydropower, agriculture (irrigation and aquaculture), hydropower, environmental and recreation. Another clear picture of the water demand and use in Kafue Catchment lays in the southern portion which is distinguished at the of the Itezhi-Tezhi Dam in the west and marks the boundary to the water inflow in the lower Kafue Catchment known as the Kafue Flats. Kafue Flats are known to contribute major industrial, socio-economic and ecological significance for Zambia with its water use of about 50% representing Hydropower Production, 20% of the National Herd, 7% of National Fisheries and 25% of Maize production.