UK-based off-grid renewables specialist BBOXX and GE have signed off on a partnership to provide energy access for small businesses, schools and other organisations in Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Swiss-headquartered firm Meeco has signed a cooperation agreement with Malagasy company Groupe Filatex to build solar projects in Madagascar, starting with two large-scale projects of 7MW and 8MW capacity and one hybrid solar-diesel project comprising of two 500kW parts.
Just a few months after Mozambique’s first ever large-scale PV project reached financial close and construction work began, the US Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has awarded a grant to pay for a feasibility study for a new project of up to 100MW capacity.
A consortium including InfraCo Africa and Smart Energies International has signed a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with the Chad’s national utility La Société Nationale d’Electricité (SNE) for a 60MW solar project.
Kazang Solar, the distribution partner of UK-headquartered off-grid solar specialist Azuri Technologies in Zambia, has been awarded US$1.6 million from the Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) to provide home lighting products to more than 7,000 off-grid customers in rural Zambia.
Zola Energy, one of two US-headquartered providers of off-grid solar-plus-storage solutions to the African continent profiled in Energy-Storage.news’ recent Global Storage Opportunity 2018 report, has obtained US$20 million debt financing.
Zimbabwean firm Karo Mining Holdings plans to build a 300MW solar project close to its new platinum mining operations west of Harare instead of its original plans for a 600MW coal-fired power plant, after discussions with the Zimbabwean government.
After successful trials, the Veolia Foundation, an arm of French waste management giant Veolia that financially backs non-profit, community-oriented projects, has decided to expand its decentralised solar electrification plans in northern Madagascar to create 1,000 nano-grids and 100 nano-entrepreneurs by the end of the year.
A number of international initiatives have helped large-scale solar gain a foothold in Africa. The question now is how the market for this segment will develop beyond these programmes and how much capacity grids will be able to support.
A veteran of Kenya’s renewable energy industry has argued strongly in favour of lead acid batteries over lithium-ion, in response to a recent Energy-Storage.news article on off-grid solar PV in Africa.
Increasingly, solar energy and behind-the-meter battery storage assets are being deployed on an ‘as-a-service’ basis and system integrator Younicos has decided to replicate the strategy for microgrids.