Access to electricity is expected to reach 90 per cent by the close of next year, the Minister of Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, has said.
He explained that the current level of access was 88.75 per cent and by next year, the country would hit the 90 per cent mark, making it possible for the nation to achieve universal access by 2025.
Speaking on powering a Sustainable and Digital Future for West Africa, using the pioneering cases of Bui Power Authority, Ghana, Dr Opoku Prempeh said the country was also on course to achieve 10 per cent contribution of renewable sources to the generation mix by 2030.
“The country’s renewable energy installed capacity is 160 megawatts (MW), representing 3.1 per cent of total installed generation capacity”.
In absolute or nominal terms, Ghana should be having close to 1,350MW of installed renewable energy in the generation capacity by 2030,” Dr Opoku Prempeh stated in a speech read on his behalf by his Technical Assistant, Kwame Agyapong, at a roundtable in Accra last Wednesday evening.
The minister indicated that the Bui Hydro Solar project was an integral part of the vision to ensure universal access to electricity by 2025.
The event was aimed at showcasing the progress that has been made in achieving the objectives set out in the power generator’s Renewable Energy Masterplan to the international community and Ghanaians.
The event attracted top global, regional and local media, including specialists in information and communication and technology, and renewable energy industrialists.
Bui Power Authority (BPA) organised the programme in collaboration with Huawei, a leading global provider of ICT infrastructure and smart devices, and MEI Energy Ghana Limited, with the support of the Ministry of Energy.
Dr Opoku Prempeh stated that the benefits of digital technology in the provision of energy included its ability to optimise operations.
“Ghana stands on the brink of a very exciting future and with access to electricity already at 88.75 per cent, we are poised to achieve universal access to electricity by 2025, making the country a beacon of hope for Africa,” the Energy Minister pointed out.
The Deputy Director of Power in charge of Renewable Energy at the Ministry of Energy, Seth Mahu, explained that the Energy Ministry had put together an Energy Transition Framework as a long-term approach to develop the energy mix of the country.
He said within that framework, three key energy sources would play leading roles in the supply of energy for the country.
“We first of all have to expand renewable energy to about 20,000 MW by 2070.
That will mean that renewable energy will account for about 20 per cent of the total generation mix of the country,” the Deputy Director of Power said.
Mr Mahu mentioned the second source of power generation that the country was pursuing vigorously as nuclear energy, with the third energy source being natural gas.
“So in summary, the current mix is hydro, thermal and renewable energy. Going into the future, we see a mix that will be tilting towards renewables, nuclear energy and natural gas,” he added.
Mr Mahu pointed out that at that point the country’s economy would be largely driven by the energy sector.
Energy storage project
The Chief Finance Officer of Mei Energy, Xiao Shumei, said her outfit was set to undertake a new project in collaboration with BPA.
The project includes completing a 100 MW Photovoltaic (PV) power station and a 30MW hour PV energy storage project.
“Our bit is to improve power generation consistency, enhance energy storage management and reduce operational costs.
In the spirit of cooperation, we have partnered Huawei to create a string inverter solution which, in fact, has become the ideal solution for sites with logistics issues,” Ms Shumei stated.