RIC Energy starts 23-MWp solar project in Uganda

July 21 (Renewables Now) – Spanish solar PV developer RIC Energy announced on Wednesday it had launched construction of a 23-MWp photovoltaic (PV) farm in Uganda.

RIC Energy is building the project, named Nkonge, for The Xsabo Group, a Kampala-based German-Ugandan diversified consultancy.

Works will also include the construction of a 132-kV/33-kV step-up substation and a 4.5-kilometre 132-kV overhead line, RIC Energy said.

The Spanish firm expects to wrap up construction some time in the first half of 2023.

Once the Nkonge solar farm goes online, The Xsabo Group will sell its output to Uganda Electricity Transmission Co Ltd, while RIC Energy stays on the ground to provide operations and maintenance services.

RIC Energy touts Nkonge as the largest privately funded solar project in Uganda, and one of the largest in East and Central Africa.

The firm was previously hired by The Xsabo Group to build its 20-MWp Kabulasoke solar farm in Uganda.

Source: Renewables Now

Les organismes solaires et éoliens s’unissent pour orienter les financements vers les énergies renouvelables africaines

Les organismes commerciaux des industries solaires et éoliennes se sont unis pour stimuler le financement de l’énergie renouvelable pour les pays africains.


SolarPower Europe et le Conseil Mondial de l’Énergie Éolienne(CMEE) ont signé un accord avec la société de médias RenewAfrica et l’Association de l’Industrie Solaire Africaine(AISAF) pour organiser conjointement le Sommet d’ Investissement de l’Énergie Renouvelable Africaine (SIERA) en Afrique du Sud en septembre.


Le rôle de SIERA sera de catalyser les investissements dans l’énergie renouvelable pour l’Afrique en amenant les principaux acteurs de l’industrie à explorer le potentiel d’énergie verte du continent.


Malgré le potentiel du continent en matière d’énergie renouvelable, avec le solaire photovoltaïque en tête des installations de capacité d’ici 2030, l’Afrique n’a reçu que 2 % des 2 billions de dollars américains qui ont été investis dans l’énergie renouvelable depuis le début du siècle jusqu’en 2020.


Compte tenu de la déconnexion majeure entre les développeurs solaires et les financiers des projets en Afrique, SIERA fonctionnera comme une “plate-forme de mise en relation idéale” entre les parties prenantes des projets renouvelables, a déclaré John van Zuylen, PDG de l’AISAF.


L’événement se tiendra moins de deux mois avant que l’Égypte ne tienne la 27ème Conférence des Nations Unies sur les Changements Climatiques(COP27) , qui attirera l’attention du monde sur les changements climatiques et l’industrie renouvelable avec une opportunité pour l’Afrique d’augmenter ses investissements dans l’énergie renouvelable.


En outre, le sommet explorera également les opportunités que l’industrie de l’hydrogène vert pourrait créer sur le continent, car la technologie a été considérée comme un potentiel élevé d’opportunités économiques pour divers pays.


Le projet d’ammoniac vert de Scatec en Égypte et les efforts de la Namibie pour apporter des investissements dans l’hydrogène vert ont été quelques-uns des projets critiques annoncés pour l’hydrogène vert sur le continent plus tôt cette année.


Walburga Hemetsberger, PDG de SolarPower Europe, a déclaré : « L’Afrique est un véritable « continent solaire ». À mesure que les économies africaines se développent, elles présentent un énorme potentiel d’investissement et de déploiement solaire. SIERA est prêt à soutenir l’énergie solaire de niveau supérieur et l’énergie propre, verte et sécurisée pour des millions de citoyens africains.

Source: PV tech

KENYA: EDFI and Oikocredit invest $8 million in Solar Panda’s solar kits.

Canadian company Solar Panda is securing US$8 million for its expansion in Kenya. The funds were raised in a Series A round involving the European Union (EU)-funded Electrification Finance Initiative (EDFI ElectriFI) and Oikocredit, an impact investor based in Utrecht, Netherlands.

The Electrification Finance Initiative (EDFI ElectriFI) supports rural electrification in Kenya. In a series, A funding round, the European Union (EU) funded program has partnered with Dutch impact investor Oikocredit to invest USD 8 million in Solar Panda. The Canadian company uses the pay-as-you-go model to spread its electricity access solutions in Kenya.

The company installs solar home systems that are now making a significant contribution to rural household electrification in sub-Saharan Africa. “We are extremely pleased to become a shareholder in Solar Panda. The company has shown impressive growth over the past few years and has demonstrated strong resilience in the Covid environment,” said Lionel Dieu, ElectriFI’s Head of Investments at EDFI Management Company.

 “Through this co-investment with Oikocredit, we want to support the company in its next stage of development. This includes reaching a growing number of households without access to electricity in underserved counties in Kenya,” adds Lionel Dieu. In particular, Solar Panda intends to accelerate its activities in the northern part of Kenya, which lags behind other parts of Kenya in terms of access to electricity.

The company will rely on more than 1,000 independent sales agents and 300 staff who are deployed to install solar home systems in households. Solar Panda plans to use the funds provided by EDFI and Oikocredit to provide access to electricity to 100,000 households by installing solar home systems with a combined capacity of 8.4 MW, mainly in northern and northeastern Kenya. EDFI’s clean electricity systems are expected to avoid 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.

Source: Afrik 21

IEA Africa report cites potential in renewables, minerals and hydrogen

The Africa Energy Outlook 2022, a special report published this week by the International Energy Agency (IEA), reveals that renewables will be the driving force that expands the African continent’s electricity sector this decade.

The continent’s rich renewable resources also offer huge potential to produce green hydrogen, with potential production equalling the continent’s entire current energy demand, at internationally competitive price points by 2030. Meanwhile, Africa’s revenues from critical mineral exports should more than double by 2030.

However, investment in these areas must more than double over current levels, exceeding $190bn each year from 2026 to 2030, with two-thirds going to clean energy. This will require stepped-up investment by development banks and, in part, supporting industrial development by expanding exploitation of the continent’s extensive and still untapped natural gas reserves.

“The immediate and absolute priority for Africa and the international community is to bring modern and affordable energy to all Africans,” said IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol. “Our new report shows this can be achieved by the end of this decade through an annual investment of $25 billion, the same amount needed to build just one new LNG terminal a year,” he said.

According to the report, Africa is home to 60 percent of the best solar resources worldwide, but currently holds just 1 percent of solar PV capacity. Solar power is already the cheapest source of power in many parts of Africa and is set to outcompete all other sources continent-wide by 2030.

The report presents a ‘Sustainable Africa Scenario’ in which renewables – including solar, wind, hydropower, and geothermal – account for over 80 percent of new power generation capacity added by 2030. This expansion of renewables allows the African countries to achieve their key energy-related development goals, including universal access to modern energy services by 2030 and the full implementation of their climate pledges (nationally determined contributions) to that year.

Thus, despite enormous challenges, Africa stands to benefit from declining clean energy technology costs and shifting global investment patterns that will help African countries attract increasing flows of climate finance. The world’s increasing ambitions to cut emissions will help the continent.

The IEA’s new report emphasizes prominent themes in Energy & Utilities’ Middle East and Africa Outlook Report 2022, published in March. The E&U report states that many countries in the region will have to prioritize renewable energy projects, rather than conventional oil and gas-fired alternatives, in order to attract investors and ensure project financing.

In Africa specifically, the E&U report says that as it becomes harder for fossil fuel schemes to raise funding, more attention is being given to renewable energy opportunities across the continent.

Source: Energy & Utilities