Two German companies will develop one of the largest off-grid PV and storage projects to date. The low cost of the technology and expense of conventional generators is likely to see the hybrid plant recover its costs in three to seven years.
A World Bank presentation in London drew an encouraging picture for the Nigerian market by explaining why the mini grid segment will take off in the next 12 months.
The government of the Tshopo province has signed an agreement with Cat Projects Africa for the PV plant. The project will be connected to the grid operated by utility Société nationale d’électricité and is intended to improve power supply in provincial capital Kisangani.
An €18 million loan has been provided by the African Development Bank. The solar park, planned for capital N’Djamena, will be coupled to 4 MWh of storage.
Power purchase agreements may be voluntarily renegotiated by extending the 20-year deals or enabling independent power producers to add more efficient PV components, thus increasing plant generation capacity.
The solar park will be connected to the Soma substation, a piece of grid infrastructure expected to increase electricity access in the country to 60%. The project will add to 30 MW of other solar facilities under development in the West African nation.
A report by the Powering Peace organization states UN missions in the Democratic Republic of Congo could reduce expense and pollution by using off-grid solar to power operations instead of diesel generators. Adding a 200 kW solar system with 200 kW/450 kWh of energy storage would reduce diesel consumption 80% for 10-year savings of almost $2.6 million, states the group.
The European Investment Bank and the Netherlands Development Finance Company have each provided €53 million for the Radiant and Eldosol solar projects.
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