On Tuesday, Ghana’s Minister of Power, Dr Kwabena Donkor highlighted that the country’s energy access has increased to 80% within the last three years, adding that it now “ranks highest with South Africa” in terms of penetration of electricity.
This was disclosed during the ceremony of the 225MW power barge which set sail from Turkey earlier this week and is expected to dock in Ghana in November, Ghanaweb reported.
Donkor said: “Let me dare say here that in terms of access to electricity, Ghana today ranks highest with South Africa with over 80 per cent penetration of electricity.”
In 2012, the World Bank recorded that Ghana had an electrification rate of 64.1% compared with South Africa which had 85.4%. This shows a significant increase for Ghana, which despite its challenges in meeting demand, has enabled to increase its energy access by 15%.
Donkor added that the end of the power crisis was in sight: “We have gone through a temporary period of power challenges but as we speak we are almost at the end of it.”
Should the current power situation not be resolved by 2016, Donkor vowed to hand in his resignation.
The West African country is soon to be the beneficiary of two 225MW floating power plants, provided by Turkish powership manufacturer, Karadeniz Holding through a five-year lease agreement.
The power barges rely on heavy fuel and natural gas as a feedstock, and can feed directly into the grid once connected.
With climate change being a key factor to consider, these barges are able to operate using Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) as a feedstock. LNG is the cleanest burning fossil fuel available, and according to studies by the US Environmental Protection Agency, natural gas emits 117,000 pounds per billion Btu of energy input compared to 208,000 for coal.