Electricity access in Africa still a challenge says World Bank

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Electricity access in Africa still a challenge says World Bank
Solar power plant in Morocco.
Electricity access in Africa continues to be a major challenge, World Bank Global Lead for Energy Access Mac Cosgrove-Davies has disclosed.

Nigeria for example is struggling to connect its citizens to the grid with over 80 million lacking access to electricity

Speaking during the Fourth Mini Grid Action Learning Event: titled, ‘Up scaling Mini Grids for Low-Cost and Timely Access to Electricity’ in Abuja on Tuesday, Mr Cosgrove-Davies noted that the problem faces most African countries.

“Six out of ten people without access to electricity in the world are in Africa,” he observed.

More than one billion people still lack access to electricity globally with Sub Saharan Africa  being home to about 600 million of these.

Nigerian seeks financial support from the World Bank to support a National Electrification Project that focuses on off-grid opportunities including mini grids.

Across 36 African countries, just 2 in 5 people have access to a reliable supply of energy throughout the day, according to a new study by research network Afrobarometer.

Read:Burkina Faso unveils West Africa’s largest solar power plant

Marred by insufficient capacity, poor reliability and high costs, the energy infrastructure in Africa is still problematic, with 25 nations in sub-Saharan Africa facing “a crisis,” according to  World Bank.
In some countries – Burundi, Chad, Liberia, Malawi and South Sudan – less than 10 percent of people have access to electricity at all.
Overall, 625 million people are without power in sub-Saharan Africa alone – that’s 68 percent of the population, according to the International Energy Agency.
Inadequate electricity access in Africa coupled with rising cost of electricity means manufacture is slowing down.
But the continent has in recent years turned to renewables which it sees as a major step towards sustainable energy.
In Kenya for instance, construction of a mega Turkana wind power project has been completed.

The project aims to provide 310MW of reliable, low cost wind power to the Kenya national grid, equivalent to approximately 18% of Kenya’ current installed electricity generating capacity.

Burkina Faso on the other hand has launched West Africa’s largest solar power plant in a deliberate move by the country to boost renewables and cut energy dependence on its neighbours.

In Morocco a concentrated solar power plant on is being constructed  which upon completion will become the world’s largest.

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