RWANDA EYES GEOTHERMAL ‘CLEAN AND GREEN’ ENERGY SOURCES
Rising energy costs through the use of thermal electricity plants using heavy fuel oil or diesel have brought plans back to tap into geo-thermal sources in Rwanda to produce affordable power.
Details published in Kigali yesterday speak of up to 30 MW of initial geo-thermal electricity potential, arguably expandable in the future, which the country intends to tap into.
Interesting enough the site selected is Mt. Karisimbi, one of the 5 major volcanic mountains in the West of the country bordering the Congo DR, which is also part of the Parc de Volcanoes where the rare mountain gorillas are located. Three ‘wells’ are to be drilled at a cost of over 6 million US Dollars each although it is not yet clear to what extent environmental impact studies have been carried out at this stage and if power lines and other installations will impact on the tourism activities at that particular site, something to be established in coming days and weeks.
Another new plant, due to use methan gas from the depth of Mt. Kivu, and due to generate up to 100 MW when in full production, has reportedly been delayed, leaving Rwanda with a critical electricity production shortfall at peak times, something seen across the entire East African region at present.
Watch this space for updates on these developments, as and when available.