100MW Assela wind farm is set to be constructed in Ethiopia. This is after Siemens Gamesa signed its first wind power project in Ethiopia with state-owned electricity company Ethiopian Electric Power (EEP), strengthening its leadership in Africa as the country begins to expand its green energy capacity to meet ambitious renewable targets.
The wind farm will be located between the towns of Adama and Assela, approximately 150km south of the capital, Addis Ababa, and will contribute to clean and affordable power for the country’s electricity grid.
It will be made up of 29 SG3.4-132 wind turbines and is expected to be commissioned by the start of 2023.The project will generate about 300,000 MWh per year. Siemens Gamesa will provide full engineering, procurement, and turnkey construction.
“Siemens Gamesa is intent on expanding its leadership across Africa, and in turn help a growing transition to green energy across the continent. So, we are extremely pleased to begin work in Ethiopia and look forward to collaborating with both EEP and the country to continue to promote their drive to install more renewables and meet transformational energy targets,” said Roberto Sabalza, CEO for Onshore Southern Europe and Africa at Siemens Gamesa.
The Assela wind project will be financed by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs via Danida Business Finance (DBF) adding to a loan agreement signed between the Ethiopian Ministry of Finance and Economic Cooperation (MoFEC) and Danske Bank A/S.
Renewable energy in Ethiopia
Ethiopia has many renewable resources covering wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass, and the country aspires to be a power hub and the battery for the Horn of Africa. The country’s National Electrification Program, launched in 2017, outlines a plan to reach universal access by 2025 with the help of off-grid solutions for 35% of the population.
The country has set an ambitious target to supply 100% of its domestic energy demand through renewable energy by 2030. According to the African Development Bank, Ethiopia has abundant resources, particularly wind with a potential 10GWof installation capacity and having installed 324MW at present.