Energize Power developments in Africa
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Power developments in Africa

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Solar power for 850 homes in Mali

Two of the largest off-grid PV plants in Africa started operation in Mali using multicluster technology from SMA Solar Technology (SMA). Both hybrid systems with a combined output of 200 kWp, have been supplying solar power to more than 850 households in the villages of Kolondieba (150 kWp) and Ourikela (50 kWp). The contracting authority for both projects is the Dutch Foundation Rural Energy Services (FRES). AC-coupled off-grid solutions also contribute significantly to local creation of added value. This is important because only by strengthening the local economy can residents of a village feel truly self-sufficient. That is the only way to make rural electrification really sustainable. www.4-traders.com

US124-million loan for geothermal projects in Kenya

In December 2011 in Tunis the African Development Bank (AfDB) group board of directors approved two financing vehicles to support geothermal steam field development projects in Kenya. It said this would set the stage for investments that would help meet Kenya’s rapidly increasing demand for power. The project should be financed through a loan of $124-million from the African Development Fund (ADF) concessionary resources, and a loan and grant totaling US$25-million from the scaling-up renewable energy programme under the climate investment funds. www.afdb.org/en

Solar-diesel hybrid system

Power generation projects take time to plan and to complete. The Tsumkwe renewable energy project, one of the largest state-of-the art 200 kW solar diesel hybrid systems in Africa was commissioned in 2011. Businesses and some 700 residents now have access to modern energy services. Nampower was in the process of consulting government on a suitable date for the official inauguration of this project, expected to be during the first quarter of 2012. The utility will continue to consult and engage all its stakeholders for support, especially with the application of energy savings and other demand side management strategies. www.nampower.com.na

Tunisia plans power export interconnections

With unparalleled solar resources, and significant wind power generation possibilities in the north of the country, Tunisia has focused on a multifaceted programme to develop these projects.The government has introduced legislation allowing surplus electricity produced by plants attempting to be self-sufficient to be sold on to the Tunisian Electricity and Gas Company, up to 30% of total production, plus a flat network fee for transporting output to the place of consumption. To address grid issues, interconnections with those of Algeria and Libya and European countries are planned, including a 1 GW connection with Italy expected to be operational by 2016. www.ey.com

Zambia expects to export power

The Zambia power rehabilitation project involves the rehabilitation and up-rating of the country’s three major hydro power stations, Kafue Gorge, Kariba North Bank and Victoria Falls. Kafue Gorge was increased from 900 to 990 MW, Victoria Falls has been restored to 108 MW and Kariba North Bank is up from 600 MW to 720 MW.  The total generation capacity yielded from the PRP is 210 MW. The main hydro power projects include Kariba North Bank 360 MW to be completed by 2013 and Kafue Gorge lower hydro project (750 MW) to be completed by 2017. The Itezhi-Tezhi hydro power project (120 MW) could be completed in February 2015. www.zesco.co.zm

Sierra Leone: Second phase of hydro scheme

Joule Africa, the jointly held US/UK firm that entered into a memorandum of understanding with the Government of Sierra Leone to develop the second phase of the Bumbuna Hydroelectric power station has announced that it has commenced the Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) for the project. The study, will undertake the following: a full environmental and social impact study of the proposed dam sites; hydrological studies; a topographical survey, including an aerial survey; geotechnical studies; and design work. The BFS launched a month ahead of schedule and will be completed by October 2012. http://jouleinvestments.com

Wind energy in Morocco

The Moroccan government has set the target of raising the contribution of renewable energy to 20% of national electricity consumption by 2020. In support of this target, two wind farms with a combined capacity of 100 MW are scheduled to commence commercial operation by 2013. Siemens will be responsible for supply, installation and commissioning of the 44 wind turbines each rated at 2,3 MW. The 50 MW Haouma Wind Farm will be built about 6 km south of the Mediterranean coast. Also at 50 MW, Foum El Oued will be 9 km south east of the port of Laâyoune in southern Morocco. www.discoversiemensafrica.com

Power plant sale in Tanzania

Wentworth Power is to sell its 18 MW gas-fired power plant and associated assets in Mtwara, Tanzania to Tanesco, the Tanzanian utility, for $13,5-million. The Mtwara power plant is an 18 MW gas-to-power generation facility that sells electricity to Tanesco in the Mtwara and Lindi regions of Southern Tanzania. It is supplied by natural gas produced, processed and pipelined from the Mnazi Bay Concession area. Wentworth, an independent oil and gas company operating in the Rovuma Basin of East Africa, sees power generation as a non-core business, hence the sale. www.wentworthresources.com

Upgrade of Namibian hydropower

Namibia’s main source of power generation, the Ruacana hydropower station, is scheduled for a boost with the installation of a 4th unit generator. When commissioned in March 2012, an additional 92 MW will be added to the current installed capacity of 249 MW. Other projects at feasibility study phase include Kudu, Erongo Coal, Baynes, Orange River Hydros, biomass, wind, and solar. Nationally, the demand for electricity continues to increase and has long since surpassed the combined current national installed capacity at Ruacana, Van Eck and Paratus power stations.


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