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ERA licenses 9 renewable energy projects

By Vision Reporter

Added 22nd October 2014 02:28 PM

An additional 9 renewable electricity plants, some under the Global Energy Transfer for Feed-in-Tarrifs (GET-FiT) programme, have been licensed to generate 132.7MW to boost Uganda’s transformation into an upper middle class country.

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An additional 9 renewable electricity plants, some under the Global Energy Transfer for Feed-in-Tarrifs (GET-FiT) programme, have been licensed to generate 132.7MW to boost Uganda’s transformation into an upper middle class country.

By Samuel Sanya

An additional 9 renewable electricity plants, some under the Global Energy Transfer for Feed-in-Tarrifs (GET-FiT) programme, have been licensed to generate 132.7MW to boost Uganda’s transformation into an upper middle class country.


Eight power plants had been shortlisted under the first phase of the programme. Cumulatively, the projects will supply 108.5MW to the national grid as they go online starting in 2015 to 2018.

Uganda needs to generate 42, 000 MW of electricity from all hydro sources, the petroleum and gas sources, geo-thermal and nuclear sources using uranium to become an upper middle income country by 2040.

“With the growing demand for electricity, estimated at between 10 –12% per annum in the short to medium term, Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) will continue to focus the regulatory thrust on expansion of generation capacity,” Dr. Benon Mutambi, the ERA boss told reporters at the ERA house during an electricity sector update.

Donors such as Norway, the European Union, UK’s DFID, Germany and the World Bank have committed €70m (about sh245b) as guarantee scheme to enhance the bankability of the power plants.

The money will be used to subsidize the cost of the resulting power by providing between US cents 0.5 to 2 per unit of electricity. Construction of the projects is set to start in December 2014 and be
completed in 2 years.

The projects include Nyamwamba (9.2MW), Rwimi (5.5MW), Kikagati (16MW), Kakira (20MW), Siti 1 (5MW), Siti 2 (16.5MW), Waki (4.8MW), Nengo Bridge (6.7MW), PH industrial Farms (1MW), Lubilia Kawempe Hydro (5.4MW), Muvumbe (6.5MW), and the 11.9MW sugar and allied industries power plant.

The 1MW power plant in the district of Gulu will be the first biomass gasification plant in Uganda utilizing ground nut husks, while Kakira and the sugar and allied industries power plants will run on bagasse, a sugar cane by-product.

The energy projects will add the much-needed clean generation capacity, strengthen regional grids and result in emissions reductions of over 11 million tons of Carbon dioxide gas annually.

Mutambi noted that the winning bid for a separate 8 acre 50MW solar farm is set to be announced in a months’ time. Fifteen companies have been granted permits to carryout feasibility studies.

Uganda currently has an installed electricity capacity of 890MW, but only 493MW are available due to restrictions on water release, wear and tear of some power dams and the least cost merit dispatch policy that favours the use of cheap hydro power over expensive thermal power.

Ziria Tibalwa Wako, the ERA director technical regulation revealed that the Umeme has been awarded a $4.1m (about sh11b) contract to supply 420,000 energy efficient Light Emitting Diode (LED) to homes starting January 2015.

The bulbs that are rated at 2W will see household electricity consumption drop by as much as 20% reducing energy waste while cutting energy bills. The bulbs will be exchanged for the old incandescent bulbs for free.




 

ERA licenses 9 renewable energy projects

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