Last week Friday, the AfDB’s board of directors approved a project preparation grant of $2.3 million to kick-start future investments in decentralised power systems in rural and urban areas in the east African country.
The Bank explained that the grant is being provided by the Scaling–Up Renewable Energy Programme of the Climate Investment Funds, which is managed by the AfDB’s Department of Climate Change and Green Growth.
Off-grid master plan
According to the AfDB, the grant will cover the expenses associated with the development of an off-grid master plan for the electrification of a number of islands across Lake Victoria, including feasibility studies for the most viable ones and set the path for future energy investments in the selected islands. Read more…
AfDB’s Vice President for Power, Energy, Climate Change and Green Growth, Amadou Hott, commented: “Rural electrification rate in sub-Saharan Africa is the lowest in the world, at less than 20%. The electrification of rural areas carries inherent difficulties.
“Issues such as high costs of capital, low revenue collection rates, and insufficient generation capacity among others, are good examples of difficulties that are severely augmented when the area targeted for electrification is remote and unique in nature.”
“The proposed electrification program on the islands in Lake Victoria will considerably boost economic and social development and improve the lives of the most vulnerable ones especially the women and youth”, Hott added. Read more…
The Bank further outlined that the grant will develop the required regulatory and legal frameworks with the objective of piloting solar net-metering systems before the technology can be scaled-up and rolled-out to private businesses and households.
Net-metered solar photovoltaic (PV) systems provide a win-win situation, the AfDB highlighted.
“On the one hand these systems provide consumers with the ability of self-generating power for their daily needs, and on the other hand, it allows them to sell any excess power back to the grid and earn extra income”, Director, Climate Change and Green Growth, Anthony Nyong, said.
The grant will also support the installation of solar PV rooftop systems on government-owned buildings around Kampala, Jinja, Mbale and Entebbe.