Posted by: Odzangba | February 20, 2007

On power cuts in Ghana…

This past week has been terrible for me. There’ve been frequent power cuts that disrupt everything. That’s why I’ve been unable to blog for so long. We still don’t have power at home and I don’t know how I’m going to finish my various assignments before Friday.😦

For those outside Ghana, we’re in the middle of a national energy crisis that has forced the sole energy distribution company (ECG) to embark upon what it terms “load shedding”. That means power goes off for twelve hours every three days or so. Retailers of power generators are gleeful though as they are making record sales… economic self-interest huh?

I’ll have more to say about ECG and VRA later this week. Right now, I have to go get some supper before the lights go off again.🙂


Responses

  1. I’m wondering where you are in Ghana, and how the energy crisis is being dealt with on that end, particularly emergency measures. Here’s the reason I ask. I live in Jacksonville Florida and a friend and I have observed multiple and frequent flights of the Antonov AN-124 cargo freighter flying in and out of our airport, loading 18 wheeler size Ring Power portable generators. This is an unusual sight in our area to say the least. After not seeing anything in the local news I started researching and found that the generators are being flown to Ghana, probably to Tema, Kotoka airport. More research reveals it is a project of the World Bank to aide in the current energy crisis. My curiosity is in where the generators are going and how they are being used. My understanding is that the current energy crisis is due to a lack of water in reservoirs for hydroelectric power.
    Further, are you aware, is the energy crisis due to solely low water levels, or are there other factors, such as development outstripping the ability to provide electricity? Just wondering from afar. Would like to hear from you if it permits. Thanks Paul

  2. Hi Paul,
    If I may ask, are you Ghanaian? It’s nice to hear someone living so far away is interested in our local economy. I live in Madina, a suburb of Accra and like I said, our lights go off every three days for 12 hours. It is true that electricity generating units have been imported and are being installed at Tema but there has been no change yet in the ‘load shedding’ exercise. My guess is they have not been connected to the national grid yet. There hasn’t been much in the local news about when they will become fully operational.

    The government here put in place a few measures to ease the problem; Ghana is now buying some 100 megawatts of electricity from Nigeria and an agreement has been reached with both the Nigerian and Benin governments where Nigeria will now supply 80 megawatts of electricity to Benin so as to reduce pressure on the Akosombo dam. Before the crisis, Ghana provided most of Benin’s electricity.

    The problem has many sides to it. Yes, demand is certainly threatening to outstrip supply. Our domestic energy needs are expected to grow 5% annually. When you add up the energy needs of the countries we supply electricity to, the picture is not very pretty.

    Then we have to deal with the dependence on rain to feed the Akosombo dam, our primary source of electric energy. The unreliability of the weather is a well documented fact. I’m afraid the water may fall to even lower levels in the future.

    Significant proportions of energy generated is also lost due to the lamentable state of our national grid. Much of the hardware sitting on the ground was installed in the 1950s and have seen little maintenance, not to mention upgrades.

    If you ask me, we need to, as a matter of urgency, switch to renewable energy sources. We have sunlight in abundance. We also have a considerable coastline if wind power is to be harnessed. Short term measures like generators are not the answer.

  3. finally there is a SMART solution to the energy problem.
    SMART NOISELESS Fuel-less generators.
    very affordable.
    a dependable life long partner
    http://www.smartgenerators.com

  4. also available are smart solar chargers with an inbuilt torch light


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