By Juliet Waiswa & Taddeo Bwambale
Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) is to switch all its facilities to solar power in a bid to save on energy, the executive director, Jennifer Musisi has revealed.
Musisi made the revelation in her recent presentation at the Technical Experts Meeting on Urban Environment, held on the sidelines of the UN Climate Change Conference in Bonn, Germany.
The meeting attracted experts from cities across the world to share their experience on how their activities address climate change.
Tokyo, Lima, Bogota and Kampala showcased their innovations at the meeting attended by delegates from several agencies including UN Habitant, Global Environment Facility and Green Climate Finance.
According to a brief to New Vision, Musisi told delegates that the installation of solar-powered street lights along newly reconstructed roads was one of KCCA’s climate-resilient projects.
Over the next five years, KCCA will install up to 20,000 solar stands in the city, Musisi said. Some of the solar lights have been installed along Entebbe, Mbogo and Kabakanjagala Roads.
In its 2012/13 budget, KCCA allocated sh1.28bn for revamping the street lighting system in the Central Business District (CDB) and paying for electricity bills.
During the period, a total of sh1.24b was spent on installing over 2,700 street lights in the city, repairing non-functional lights, and paying all electricity bills.
By switching to solar, KCCA will save about sh600m every year on electricity bills for street lighting alone, the Authority’s spokesperson, Robert Kalumba told New Vision on Thursday.
A total of sh1.24b was spent on installing over 2,700 street lights in the city, repairing non-functional lights, and paying all electricity bills in 2012/13. Facebook/KCCA
She revealed that negotiations were ongoing with private sector players to provide additional solar lights, in exchange for street pole advertising rights.
Musisi named other climate resilient projects as the construction of Lubigi channel to control flooding in city suburbs, and electricity generation from a landfill site, turning solid waste into a power source.
KCCA has supplied Eco stoves that use volcanic stones to over 200 women who cook food for sale at one of the KCCA markets, in a bid to reduce use of charcoal and cutting of trees.
On initiatives in mass public transport in Kampala, Musisi disclosed that KCCA was also encouraging the use of buses instead of mini-buses and motorcycles.
KCCA is finalising plans to introduce a Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) system to be financed through concessional loan, with the operations managed by a private company.
She pledged that the Authority would incorporate climate change responsive aspects in all infrastructure project designs.
In her brief to New Vision, Musisi said the conference generated a lot of interest in Kampala’s achievements, particularly in revenue management and solid waste management.
Several international institutions pledged their support to KCCA to implement climate-responsive projects.
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