renewable wind farm
Renewable wind project to be developed in the central town of Singida, Tanzania.
The construction of the wind farm is expected to be carried out over three years in a three series phase of 50.8MW

On Monday, global energy infrastructure investment company American Capital Energy & Infrastructure (ACEI) announced a commitment to invest in Senegal’s first industrial-scale wind power project, the largest wind farm planned for West Africa.

According to ACEI, the total capital cost of the wind farm is estimated at $343 million (ZAR 4 billion). ACEI is expecting to provide around $85 million (ZAR1 billion) and the remainder is expected to come from senior and mezzanine lenders.

Diversifying the energy mix

The wind farm will have a total generation capacity of 151.8MW , located in Taiba Ndiaye, Senegal.

This project falls in line with the Senegalese’ government wanting to integrate renewable energy technology into its energy mix to ensure a reliable and sustainable power supply is meeting the increasing demand.

The country’s national utility Senelec (Societe Nationale d’Electricite du Senegal) will purchase the clean power under a 20-year power purchase agreement which was signed in December 2013.

Project construction process

ACEI will work closely with the project’s developers, a French-based group Sarreole S.a.r.l, providing financial support and project equity.

The construction of the wind farm is expected to be carried out over three years in a three series phase of 50.8MW. ACEI said in a company statement that Chapin International & Co is acting as the project development and financial advisor for the project.

Paul Hanrahan, CEO and co-founder of ACEI, said: “This project makes a lot of sense for Senegal – both from an economic as well as an environmental standpoint.  Senegal’s impressive economic growth requires more electric generating capacity to be built as its electrification rate [approx 75%] is well above average for the Sub-Saharan region.”

According to Hanrahan, the Senegalese Government has made a commitment to transition from diesel-based power generation to cheaper and cleaner energy sources, such as wind power.

Hanrahan added: “Because this is a priority project under President Macky Sall’s Plan Emergent Senegal, dedicated to accelerating the country’s economic growth, we are confident that the project will move ahead quickly.”