The Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA), run by the African Development Bank, has approved of a US$ 990,000 grant to support the preparation of a 9-MW solar-hydro hybrid project in Burundi. The project plans to have two plants, each featuring a solar and a hydro component as well as a local distribution network and interconnection to the national power grid. The project has an innovative hybrid design which is anticipated to regularize the power output during the dry and wet season and mitigate power shortfalls caused by climate change.
The grant from the African Development Bank is key to assuring project bankability, will support technical feasibility, environmental and social impact assessment and financial advisory for the project.
Benefits of the Project
When completed, the project will also electrify about 20,000 households in surrounding communities through a local distribution network. The project will also generate socio-economic benefits especially for women and small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) by enhancing access to electricity. It will also pave the way for increased private sector participation in renewable energy to diversify the energy mix in Burundi. Daniel Brose, President and CEO of Songa Energy Burundi said that “The funding will bring us and the people of Burundi one step closer to our collective goal of widespread electrification in rural areas in Burundi, a country that has one of the lowest rates of access to electricity in the world.”
The 9-MW solar-hydro hybrid project is in-line with the Bank’s strategic goal to support inclusive green growth by promoting access to clean, modern, reliable and affordable energy services in rural areas, and to promote energy access and renewable energy technologies as well as being in-line with Burundi’s Government’s objectives to expand renewable energy generation capacity, and promote private sector involvement in the energy sector.