Botswana Launches 10MW Rooftop Solar Power Buy Back Programme

  • Local newspaper, the Botswana Daily News has reported that the state-owned Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) intends to purchase 10 MW from its citizens over the next 3 years under the Rooftop Solar Programme.
  • 2 MW capacity is expected to come from domestic consumers and 8 MW from commercial and industrial consumers.

Last week in Gaborone, Botswana’s Minister of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security, Hon Lefoko Moagi, made the announcement by launching the “Rooftop Solar Programme” at the University of Botho in the capital Gaborone.

According to BPC, this electricity will be the surplus production of solar photovoltaic systems installed by the population. Of the 10 MWp purchased in one year, 2 MWp will come from domestic consumers and 8 MWp from commercial and industrial consumers. The maximum capacity for a single domestic consumer is 35 kW, while for commercial and industrial consumers it is 1 MW.

“Any excess energy exported by the consumer will be rolled over to the next billing cycle for a duration of 12 months, upon which time, BPC will pay the consumer for the remaining credits at the cost of generation rate at 81.51 thebe/kWh. This rate will be reviewed annually,” he stated.   Noting that solar energy was one of the greatest natural endowments that Botswana enjoyed, Minister Moagi said the programme was meant to exploit the resource.

The initiative has been made possible through a collaboration with the US governments’ USAID Southern Africa Energy Programme

The “Solar Rooftop Programme” will run for three years. To take part, interested households or companies will have to submit their solar projects before 30 November 2020 via an online application directly accessible on the BPC website. According to the company, the system will operate on a “first come, first served” basis.

To be eligible for the solar programme, a person will need to be a BPC customer, have title to their rooftop solar system, and have a meter that will measure the import and export of electricity. Successful owners will sign an interconnection agreement and/or a 15-year licence.

Author: Bryan Groenendaal

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