25 March 2016

Zimbabwe: Govt to Save 300MW Through Solar Geysers

GOVERNMENT is pursuing initiatives to save up to 300 Mega Watts of electricity by 2018 through using solar water heaters in homes and public institutions, an official has said. At least 20 percent of electricity is consumed wastefully, especially in domestic households. Speaking at a stakeholder consultative workshop on the national solar water heating program, Energy and Power Development permanent secretary Patson Mbiriri said about 40 percent of household energy consumption goes to water heating.

"A Solar Water Heating Program was launched here in September 2015 which will help save 300 MW especially in domestic households.

Mr Mbiriri said a number of Demand Side Management opportunities were available but their implementation depended on costs, availability and technology advancement.

"In 2015, residential power applications consumed 2 500 Giga-Watt hours of power as compared to industry and agriculture which had 2 200 and 470 Giga-Watt hours respectively," he said.

He said there was need to embark on programs that encourage power saving especially in domestic households.

Zimbabwe has an internal generating capacity of 1 400 MW but is currently producing 1 065 MW while at peak demand is 1 200 MW, leaving the government to import the shortfall from Eskom of South Africa and Hydro Cahora Basa of Mozambique.

The Government has embarked on several initiatives to bridge the power deficit including expanding generation capacity at Kariba and Hwange power plants.

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