Crossboundary Energy Access – which claims to be the continent’s first mini-grid financing facility – wants to unlock $11 billion in private capital to bring energy to 100 million people in sub-Saharan Africa. Raising capital has been a struggle despite mini-grids being lauded as a solid solution for electrification.
The domestic company has cleared a third debt funding facility of $9 million with Kenya-based SunFunder, responsAbility and Oikocredit. The credit means 2.5 MW of off-grid capacity, enough to bring energy to 70.000 people.
The funds will be used to implement the Sindh Solar Energy Project, a scheme aimed at increasing solar power generation and access to electricity in Sindh province.
During COP24, U.K. Energy Minister Claire Perry announced that her government will increase its efforts to help bring clean energy to Sub-Saharan Africa. A total of $126 million will be channeled via the REPP platform, which has already realized 18 projects with a considerable number of beneficiaries.
The World Bank and the Kenyan Government have announced a new strategy for attaining universal energy access for Kenyans by 2022. The plan underlines the importance of off-grid solar installations in reaching that goal. The investment opportunities for the coming five years are around US$14 billion.
French developer Voltalia has secured an $18.1 million loan for its 50 MW Kopere solar project. The plant will sell power to utility KPLC under a 20-year PPA. The country’s Rural Electrification Authority is also tendering 1.1 MW of solar plants associated with minigrids in off-grid regions.
A new report from U.S. based Rocky Mountain Institute outlines the potential for minigrid deployment to provide electricity to underserved communities around the world, to the benefit of utility companies, minigrid developers and communities. The report takes examples from Nigeria to illustrate this potential, but states that many of its findings could be applied to communities with limited or no access to electricity around the world.
The U.K. is helping islands in Scotland and the Caribbean, Pacific and Indian oceans, make the switch from dirty diesel generators to renewables. In the former, community-owned renewable systems are ensuring 24 hour energy supply, while in the latter, a new renewable energy analytics platform is set to help identify the optimum energy mix for six islands.
The first annual Battery Performance Scorecard has turned up interesting findings, including the fact high temperatures can help or hinder power output – depending on the product, and seemingly in equal measure.
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