The Riverside Solar PV Plant was recently put into operation by the Zambian firm Copperbelt Energy Company (CEC). The plant cost USD 22 million to develop and has a 33 MWp capacity.
Hakainde Hichilema, the head of state of Zambia, recently attended the facility’s inauguration. The 30-hectare plant is situated in the Kitwe district of the Copperbelt province. The plant has a 33 MWp capacity and has 61,300 solar panels that are wired to 150 solar inverters. Six transformer stations and four kilometers of the transmission line will be built due to the project, which is currently in its operational phase.
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The Riverside solar PV plant’s anticipated 54.9 GWh annual production is sufficient to power 10,000 households in Zambia.
Development of the Riverside Solar PV Plant
Over 800 people were involved throughout the construction phase, which lasted 10 months. The Lusaka Stock Exchange-listed Copperbelt Energy Company (CEC), a company that specializes in the generation, transmission, and also distribution of energy in Zambia and Nigeria, is executing the project.
According to London Mwafulilwa, PCA of CEC, they developed the pilot solar PV plant in 2018, and it came with a number of additional benefits and advantages, including training for Copperbelt University‘s faculty and staff. It became Zambia’s first grid-connected solar plant despite its size. They have gained so much expertise in the building and management of solar plants that now, after growing it from 1 MWp to 34 MWp.
The $22 million investment required for the plant was fully funded by CEC. The company seeks to continue funding Zambian renewable energy projects. Before the end of 2023, the CEC will commission a new solar power plant, according to London Mwafulilwa. Itimpi, a town in the Kitwe district, is where the 64 MWp facility is being built.