- The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) has set up a new Task Force to speed up and facilitate the development of wind energy in Africa.
The Task Force brings together leading developers, manufacturers and associations that are active in the African market, including Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy, Vestas, the South Africa Wind Energy Association, Africa Europe Energy Partnership, RES4Africa, Mainstream Renewable Power, Acciona Energia, GE Renewable Energy, NRG Systems, DNV-GL, Nordex, Goldwind, Aurora Wind Power.
The Task Force will be Chaired by Jon Lezamiz, African market development director at Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy.
Lezamiz said: “We at GWEC have not only an opportunity but the duty to share our global experience with Africa, to unlock the full potential of wind power – such as lowest LCOE energy source- and harness its development to enable economic growth and permit access-to-energy targets to be met in the continent.”
African wind market
The African wind market is set to add 6GW of additional wind capacity between 2019 and 2023, more than doubling current total capacity of 5,3GW, according to GWEC Market Intelligence’s Market Outlook Q1 2019.
According to analyst Wood Mackenzie, Africa is set to grow at an annual compound growth rate of 24% between 2019-2018, adding 33GW of new capacity.
Mercia Grimbeek, Chair of the South Africa Wind Energy Association said: “South Africa is perfectly poised to be the platform for the expansion of wind energy into the rest of Africa. We have the opportunity to use existing infrastructure and leverage off established regulatory frameworks to progress the development of wind energy generation.”
Luca Marena, Project Manager at RES4Africa also commented: “We are pleased to join the GWEC Task Force: acting in a coordinated way and speaking in a single voice is the best way for the energy sector to promote renewable energy in Africa.
“We welcome the opportunity and look forward to collaborating to achieve concrete results with fellow Task Force members”
Private investment in wind power sector
GWEC CEO Ben Backwell said: “Africa has a unique opportunity to leap-frog obsolete fossil fuel generation and create the power generation it needs from wind power and other renewables technologies.
“The continent has the resources and the human talent and skills to make this happen, and there is a huge pool of capital looking for the opportunity to invest. If we can help create the right regulatory frameworks and knowledge transfer, Africa’s growing economies will soon be powered by cheap, efficient wind power.”
The Task Force intends to:
- Advise governments on regulatory frameworks and auction systems;
- Develop and grandfather holistic approach initiatives for accelerating private investment in wind power sector in Africa;
- Foster regional power pool dialogues to maximise development of wind power potential
- Measure and highlight the economic and social benefits of wind power and the development of local value chains;
- Spread best practices and transfer knowledge from global established markets;
- Create appropriate forums to promote the growth of wind power in the continent, from seminars and technical workshops to conferences and exhibitions.
Author: Babalwa Bungane
This article was originally published on ESI Africa and is republished with permission with minor editorial changes.