15 March 2019

Namibia: National Renewable Energy Policy Finalised

The National Renewable Energy Policy for the country has now been finalised and is set to lean heavily towards the use of the renewable power generation options as main electrical generation source, according to a government official.

The Deputy Minister of Mines and Energy, Kornelia Shilunga highlighted this to electricity distribution delegates at the 10th Association of Electricity Distribution (AMEU/AEDU) technical conference this week in Swakopmund.

"We are all well aware that we are in the midst of significant change in the electrical energy environment and observe this with various viable solar generation plans nationally," she said.

According to Shilunga there is a wind generation plant in Luderitz and adjustments are being made to the national regulation to provide access to more industry players, support adequate generation capacity at a competitive price.

"Technology has helped Namibia realize its untapped resource of sunshine/wind and can play a major role in developing the country at large," she added.

Shilunga said the government is planning to commit itself to a targeted 50% rural electrification figure and 100% of all schools, hospitals and other public institutions connected to the national grid by 2020 under the Harambee Prosperity Plan.

"This plan is to be finalized soon and it is trusted that these values will remain and be achieved," he said, adding that this will only be possible if there will be an adequate electrical supply that is affordable.

Shilunga acknowledged that access to electricity remains a challenging issue and requires commitment and prioritization by the distributors to reach the goals of the Harambee Prosperity Plan and Vision 2030.

In an annual report released in February, the Electricity Control Board (ECB), has shown an increase in Namibia's reliance on imported power despite efforts by the government to increase generation capacity locally.

The report shows that the country saw its over-reliance on power imports growing from 52% of consumption in the financial year 2015/2016 to 60% in 2017/2018.

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