CSPTT Nam sets solar goals

Namibia has one of the world’s best solar regimes with an average direct normal irradiation (DNI) of 2200 kWh/m2/year, peaking to 3000 kWh/m2/year in certain areas).

The government has implemented projects aimed at unlocking Namibia’s solar potential through the Concentrating Solar Power Technology Transfer for Electricity Generation in Namibia (CSPTT NAM) project.

The Government aims to exploit this source to increase the share of renewables in the energy mix by facilitating investments in concentrating solar power, concentrating solar power plans and other related clean energy technologies, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

 CSPTT NAM’s goals are set against the background of rising electricity consumption and prices in Namibia and an expected deficient in generation capacity as indicated by current growth forecast of local electricity demand. This is compounded by the fact that Namibia currently relies heavily on energy imports from neighboring countries, putting the country in a precarious position as far as security of energy supply is concerned.

Namibia imports about 60-70% of electricity from neighboring countries.  Most of these imports come from coal fire power plants, thus the Government wants to reduce these imports. The construction of a concentrated power plant in Namibia will reduce reliance while it will also lessen Government carbon footprint. 

The Ministry of Mines and Energy is executing this project also in support of the United Nations’ (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) together with the national Harambee Prosperity Plan (HPP). UN Member States adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which includes a set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015 to end poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change by 2030.

In line with the SDGs this project particularly focuses on SDG 7, 11 and 17 that calls for clean energy; sustainable industrialisation and partnership to achieve the set goals respectively. 

The HPP by in large plans on eliminating poverty in the country, and the provision of electricity plays an important role on achieving this goal. Under the HPP there are four specific targets set for the energy sector, which requires the energy ministry to work together with its stakeholders to increase the generation capacity from now until 2020. The main focus for this assignment is to provide clean renewable energy to the nation.  Government believes in mixture of resources.  CSPTT Nam is one of the technologies that can give us power whenever we need power.

 The CSPTT Nam in sum total is about increasing Namibia’s energy mix by trying to use solar as source of renewable energy to move Namibia’s development agenda forward for development and industrialisation.

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The CSPTT Nam is supported by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Global Environment Facility (GEF), Namibia Energy Institute (NEI) as well as Namibian University of Science and Technology (NUST).