The New Times (Kigali)

22 February 2014

Rwanda: Promote Clean Energy to Ensure Sustainable Devt

The ongoing solar power project in Rwamagana District which seeks to add at least 8.5 megawatts to the national electricity grid is worth commendation and should set the pace for investors in the energy sector.

The plant, courtesy of a joint venture between Norwegian and Dutch firms, is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

That this is a clean energy project is an indication that even as more energy supply in the country is an urgent issue, especially since it is an incentive for Foreign Direct Investments, environment protection remains a priority.

Other green energy sources like wind should also be exploited further.

It is good news that new studies are being conducted to have more power plants by the same consortium of investors established elsewhere in the country.

The government targets to have at least 563 megawatts on the national grid by 2017 which presents a major opportunity for local and foreign investors.

This target can be realised if at least $1.8 billion is invested, according to estimates.

Local investors, in particular, should seek to create partnerships with foreign businesses to help realise the targeted power output.

Government and private sector should also continue to explore ways of enhancing Public Private Partnerships in the energy sector, particularly in clean energy initiatives.

This will see Rwanda continue to play its part in international efforts geared at mitigating climate change, and ultimately ensure sustainable development.

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