Madagascar is installing solar as cheaper energy alternative
Madagascar has announced plans to develop more solar power projects in a bid to reduce the costs of electricity production.
The nation’s government will implement the Madagascar Electricity Sector Operations and Governance Improvement Project (EGOSIP) following the approval from the World Bank for a US$40mn credit from the International Development Association.
The financing, which was approved in June, will see the Performance Improvement Plan imposed on the Madagascan utility, Bloomberg reported.
Ultimately, the nation aims create universal access to electrical power by 2030 – currently less than one in seven of Madagascar’s population is connected to electricity.
Lanto Rasoloelison, the country’s Energy Minister, announced that the government has sent the target to reduce the cost of electricity from MGA850 (US$0.26) per kWh for power sourced by oil and diesel, to MGA580 ($0.14) per kWh for solar power.
The project aims to diversify the source of power in the country, which see approximately 50% of its energy provided by thermal power.
The nation has great potential for solar power projects due to most regions having easy access to sunshine – receiving more than 2,8000 hours per years, the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme claims.
Drax advances biomass strategy with Pinnacle acquisition
The Group’s enlarged supply chain will have access to 4.9 million tonnes of operational capacity from 2022. Of this total, 2.9 million tonnes are available for Drax’s self-supply requirements in 2022, which will rise to 3.4 million tonnes in 2027.
The £424 million acquisition of the Canadian biomass pellet producer supports Drax' ambition to be carbon negative by 2030, using bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) and will make a "significant contribution" in the UK cutting emissions by 78% by 2035 (click here).
This summer Drax will undertake maintenance on its CfD(2) biomass unit, including a high-pressure turbine upgrade to reduce maintenance costs and improve thermal efficiency, contributing to lower generation costs for Drax Power Station.
In March, Drax secured Capacity Market agreements for its hydro and pumped storage assets worth around £10 million for delivery October 2024-September 2025.
The limitations on BECCS are not technology but supply, with every gigatonne of CO2 stored per year requiring approximately 30-40 million hectares of BECCS feedstock, according to the Global CCS Institute. Nonetheless, BECCS should be seen as an essential complement to the required, wide-scale deployment of CCS to meet climate change targets, it concludes.