As part of measures to bridge the current energy generation deficit of over 300MW, the Volta River Authority (VRA) is working earnestly to bring on stream more generation to lift the country from the ongoing debilitating energy crisis which has been christened “dumsor dumsor”
The country has been plunged into erratic power outages in the last one year which has been compounded by inadequate supply of gas from the West African Gas Pipeline in Nigeria.
Demand for energy, according to documents prepared by the VRA and sighted by The aL-hAJJ, indicates that electricity demand has been rising very fast.
The document by the largest power producer, VRA revealed that within the last four years, average year-to-year growth in demand for electricity is about 10 percent.
For example, peak demand for 2011 was 1, 664. 3MW or a 10.52 percentage growth over the 2010 demand of 1,505.9MW.
The country’s estimated demand however continues to grow and current projections indicate that the country’s requirements for electricity could hit 2,764.2MW in a year.
An official of VRA who spoke to The aL-hAJJ on condition anonymity stated that for a country using under 2,000MW of electricity currently, Ghana ought to be bringing on-stream 200MW of new capacity every year.
This additional capacity, this paper gathered, will require about US$200million of INVESTMENT per year but successive governments have been unable to keep up with that kind of investment.
The VRA official praised his Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Kirk Koffie for being part of the team that helped navigate the country out of the deep abyss of load shedding experienced for the greater part of 2013 following damage to a section of the West African Gas Pipeline in Togo by the anchor of a ship.
Some of the projects under the supervision of Ing Kirk Koffie, who has over 32-year experience with the VRA include the completion of the Kpone Power Project, the retrofitting of the Kpong Generating Station, the ongoing construction of two other hydroelectric dams in the Northern Region, as well as the installation of solar panels and wind turbines in designated locations in the country.
These initiatives, the VRA official noted were geared towards increasing the energy mix and ensure constant production of power.
According to him, some of the projects that will come on-stream this year include the Kpone Thermal Power Project (KTPP) which is expected to be completed for full commissioning by March 2015. The KTPP sited at Kpone in the Tema Metropolis, will generate 220megawatts of thermal power to augment what is currently being generated.
According to the official, the thermal plants, which were procured by government in 2008, had been lying idle till the Authority decided to install them to add more depth to the current installed capacity.
“This is the first time that VRA has sourced funds from the commercial market to install those units because of the importance of additional generation to the system. We are dealing with Fidelity Bank to help us to raise the US$100million needed to finish the project,” he said.
“VRA is close to commissioning a 220megawatts in Kpone near Tema. The commissioning should start in March and we are working hard to get an extra gas from Nigeria to also fire that machine and beside Kpone, VRA is also working seriously to bring emergency generation to help alleviate the challenges our consumers are facing right now.”
Out of the country’s total installed capacity of 2,846.5MW, the VRA generates about 75 percent of it from hydro and thermal sources. The mix includes VRA hydro, 47 percent; VRA thermal, 36 percent; VRA solar generation, 0.1 percent; IPP thermal generation 12 percent; and Bui hydro, 5 percent.
Below is a table detailing VRA projects and dates expected to come on-stream.
Expected Commissioning Year Project Installed Capacity (MW) Total Installed (MW) Implementation strategy
2014 KTPP 220 220 VRA FINANCED
2015 T2 Expansion 110 110 JV
2016 T4 (SC) 126 151 VRA ECA- FINANCED
Bongo solar Plant (REDP_P2-SPP1) 25 VRA
2017 T4 (CC) 60 195 VRA ECA-financed
TT1PP+CENIT Expansion 110 JV
(REDP_P2-SPP1) 25 JV
2018 KTPP – Expansion 110 135 VRA
(REDP_P2-SPP1) 25 VRA/ JV
2019 (REDP_P2-SPP1) 25 25 JV
2020 DTPP 450 450 VRA/ JV
2022 TT2PP Expansion 250 385 VRA
Pwalugu 48 VRA –multilateral Debt
Juale 87 VRA / JV
2023 KTPP(Phase 2) 450 450 VRA/JV
Source: The Al-Hajj.