Namibia’s national utility NamPower unveiled its second solar photovoltaic rooftop installation in the capital Windhoek last week in a bid to showcase how renewable energy projects can take pressure off the grid.

NamPower has covered the roof of the utility’s national control building with solar panels at the cost of ZAR2 million (US$184,000).

The 103 kilowatt PV grid-connected system provides up to 14 600 KW-hours of energy per month. During peak periods, the energy company estimates the system can reduce NamPower’s daily energy consumption by up to 35 per cent.

The rooftop panels, installed by Namibian Engineering Corporation, were the brainwave of NamPower’s information technology department, according to managing director Paulinus Shilamba.

NamPower’s first rooftop project was on top of the NamPower Convention Centre, also in the capital.

Leading by example

Mr Shilamba commented that the projects are a clear demonstration that NamPower is not only preaching the message of energy savings to its diverse stakeholders, but that the company is also ‘walking the talk’ and leading by example.

Shilamba emphasised that small-scale renewable energy projects such as these are taking off pressure – albeit on a small scale- from the national electricity grid.

He said: “We need combined efforts from all stakeholders in the electricity supply industry, as well as support from potential investors. We thus encourage independent power producers to become active and invest in renewable energy projects.”