Niger has signed an agreement with British firm Savannah Energy PLC for the construction and operation of the country’s first wind farm, with a proposed installed power generation capacity of up to 250 megawatts (MW) on an independent power producer (IPP) basis in the Tahoua Region of Southern Niger.
The proposed wind farm project, Parc Eolien de la Tarka, is expected to be owned by a subsidiary of Savannah, Savannah Parc Eolien de la Tarka (“SPET”), and to consist of up to 60 wind turbines with a total power generation capacity of up to 250 MW.
The initial phase of the Project will see SPET carry out a24-month feasibility study which will include an assessment to confirm the wind conditions and an assessment as to how the generated power would be incorporated into the national and regional electricity grids.
The project is expected to take advantage of the development of the West African Power Pool (“WAPP”), a high voltage interconnection network allowing power exchanges between countries in the region and increased grid stability.
Niger is scheduled to be connected to the WAPP in 2023 via a 330 kV line financed by the World Bank, the African Development Bank (“AdB”), the European Union and the Agence Française de Développement (AfD”).
Subject to the planned feasibility study confirming the ultimate scale of the Project, Parc Eolien de la Tarka is expected to produce up to 600 gigawatt hours per year of electricity. The construction phase of the Project is expected to create over 500 jobs, while the Project has the potential to reduce the cost of electricity for Nigeriens and avoid over an estimated 400,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.
Parc Eolien de la Tarka is also intended to be capable of exporting power to neighbouring countries at competitive tariffs and would significantly diversify Niger’s energy mix. The Project is expected to be sanctioned in in 2023, with first power generation in 2025. Savannah expects to fund the Project from a combination of its own internally generated cashflows and project specific debt.
Sani Mahamadou, Minister of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energies, of the Republic
of Niger, said: “I am delighted to announce our plans today for the development of Parc Eolien de la Tarka. This is a truly transformational project for Niger, potentially increasing the country’s on-grid power generation capacity significantly.
Such a project is expected to stimulate a significant increase in economic activity across our country, directly and indirectly creating thousands of jobs over the course of the next decade.
Today’s announcement follows His Excellency President Mohamed Bazoum’s undertaking at COP 26 last year to develop significant new green sources of energy for Niger. It once again demonstrates the seriousness to which the Government of Niger takes the commitments we make to the international community.
I would also like to thank Savannah – a long-term investment and operating partner for Niger – for proposing and creating this project and state that our Government will provide Savannah and their financing partners our full support to enable this project to deliver first wind power for Niger by 2025.”