Access Power Secures USTDA Grant Funding for Zambia Wind Project
Thursday 8 June, 2017 -- Access Power, a developer, owner and operator of renewable power projects in emerging markets is pleased to announce that the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has approved grant funding for Access Power's 130MW wind power project in Zambia. The announcement was made on the sidelines of the Africa Energy Forum in Copenhagen in the presence of Zambia's Minister of Energy and Water Development, HE Honourable David Mabumba.
The USTDA grant will go towards funding the feasibility study and costs related to the development of the project. Electricity in Zambia has historically been generated from hydroelectric sources, accounting for 96% of the country's electricity production. The recent prolonged droughts in Southern Africa have subsequently resulted in load shedding for up to 8-hours a day, resulting in a drop in the country's economic productivity. Diversifying Zambia's energy mix and taping into its vast clean energy power generation potential will help fuel its economy development and satisfy the urgent need for electrification.
Once completed in 2019, Access Power and its strategic partner EREN Renewable Energy, a global independent power producer, will own and operate the plant. The $275 million wind farm will generate around 500 GWh of clean electricity, making it one of the largest renewable energy projects in Sub-Saharan Africa. It will also increase Zambia's power generation capacity by 6% and help cut back the load shedding that is currently hampering the country's economic growth.
Lida Fitts, Regional Director for Sub-Saharan Africa at USTDA said: "USTDA is pleased to partner with Access Power on this landmark wind project. Using a combination of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, both areas where U.S. technologies excel, has the potential to reduce Zambia's electricity costs and energize its economy."
Reda El Chaar, Executive Chairman of Access Power said: "Today, there are no wind projects in Zambia. We are therefore very excited to begin working with USTDA to bring this pioneering project to life and open up this promising sector of Zambia's economy. This undertaking further solidifies our commitment in providing viable and sustainable solutions for the urgent electrification of Africa."
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