Uganda and Germany have held discussions on ways of offering innovative solutions to affordable off-grid solar energy in rural areas of the East African country.
This comes at a time electricity demand is growing at an average of 10 percent per annum.
In the past years, this this has led to occasional load shedding since the supply did not increase proportionally.
Officials told ChimpReports that Uganda’s Ambassador to Germany, health Amb. Marcel Tibaleka this week met with Eng. Forster Edwards from the German African Climate Change Integration Technology Institute (WECASS) to discuss renewable technology.
WECASS Institute was set up in order to deliver high-quality education and praxis-oriented Europe, sickness Africa and world-specific training.
It hopes to also take advantage of Uganda’s strategic location in the region to set up its base in Uganda and gradually export innovative solutions to the neighboring countries.
Amb Tibaleka informed Eng. Edwards that “sourcing for renewable energy technologies that generate electrical power on-site through the use of solar, wind and geothermal energies and contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions in the air, was a priority of the Government of Uganda.”
He added that though solar electric lights and solar home systems are becoming readily available, in Uganda there was need to improve the available technologies.
He encouraged WECASS not only to introduce affordable products but also offer after sales service.
Uganda is richly endowed with abundant energy resources, which are fairly distributed throughout the country.
These include hydropower, biomass, solar, geothermal, peat and fossil fuels.
But the level of solar energy utilization in Uganda is still very low.
Eng. Edwards assured his host that German-technology-designed solar systems are sustainable under African conditions, adding that renewable energy development is significant for people living in remote rural areas.
He explained that plenty of agricultural machinery and farm equipment like irrigation pumps, incubators, cold storage and driers can now be operated using reliable solar energy.
Local hospitals that require most of their drugs and vaccines to be kept under refrigeration would find such solar systems very ideal.
He added that among their popular range of products were solar street lights with hidden security cameras that enhance security.
Eng. Edwards assured the Ambassador that WECASS had the patent for its renewable energy products and would therefore assemble durable and affordable products at their Uganda Centre.
This would not only reduce production costs but create jobs for the local people.
The Centre will be equipped to remotely monitor their customers’ solar electric systems and even offer a quick response to any fault detection.
He said that WECASS would introduce mobile phone payments so as to eliminate the collection costs.