- The country has the potential to generate over 60,000MW of electric power from hydropower, wind, geothermal, solar, and biomass sources.
- Currently, a total of 8160 MWs (from the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam with two outdoor power stations, with installed capacities of 3,750MW and 2,250MW and Koysha: The 2,160 MW Hydroelectric Power Project) are under contraction
- Ethiopia’s National Electrification Programme aimed to reach universal access by 2024, with the help of off-grid solutions for 35 percent of the population.
- Over 6.7 billion tree seedlings have been planted in the annual Green Legacy program for this year alone. In just three years the country managed to plant more than 18 billion tree seedlings.
Ethiopia is endowed with plentiful renewable energy resources including hydropower, wind, geothermal, solar, and biomass, among others. The country has the potential to generate over 60,000MW of electric power from these sources. Currently, only a small portion of the potential is harnessed since the country’s power demand has been increasing fast. Proper utilization of these renewable resources would enable the country to achieve its nationwide green economy development as well as electrification mission.
According to The Ethiopian Herald, the country’s renewable energy sector is still in its infancy stage. The majority of Ethiopia’s population lives in rural areas without access to modern energy and relied solely on traditional biomass energy sources. According to documents, Ethiopia is one of the lowest electricity consumption per capita in Africa. Energy access and security are crucial factors to economic growth that Ethiopia needs to cope with key challenges related to energy security and diversification of energy supply.
Recently, the 26th Summit of the United Nations Framework on climate change (COP) was held by Webinar. The energy ministers of the member countries including the Secretary-General of Antonio Guterres attended the meeting. During the occasion, Dr.Eng.Sileshi Bekele said that Ethiopia has been implementing a green economy strategy that can withstand climate change to enable it to resist the negative effects of climate change and reduce carbon emissions.
According to Sileshi, the country has been developing its renewable energy resources responsibly, despite developing clean and renewable energy needs at a high cost. Currently, a total of 8160 MWs (from the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam with two outdoor power stations, with installed capacities of 3,750MW and 2,250MW and Koysha: The 2,160 MW Hydroelectric Power Project ) of the renewable energy project, is under implementation by the government. Ethiopia needs the support of development partners to ensure the energy sector reform to enable it to achieve the 2030 sustainable development goals by supplying accessible, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy to all citizens, he said.
According to Africa’s power journal, Ethiopia’s National Electrification program aims to provide at least 35 percent of the population with energy from renewable sources by 2024. As part of it, 100MW wind farm to power more than 400,000 Ethiopian households. Siemens Gamesa has sealed the deal on its first wind farm project in Assela. The 100MW wind farm will help to power more than 400,000 Ethiopian households. The wind farm should be commissioned by 2023 and is set to save the country more than 260,000 tons of carbon emissions annually.
Roberto Sabalza, CEO for onshore Southern Europe and Africa at Siemens Gamesa said that Siemens Gamesa is intent on expanding its leadership across Africa and in turn, will help a growing transition to green energy across the continent. So, we are extremely pleased to begin work in Ethiopia and look forward to collaborating with both EEP and the country to continue to promote their drive to install more renewable and meet transformational energy targets.
It is stated that the Assela wind project will be financed by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs via Danida Business Finance, adding to a loan agreement signed between the Ethiopian Ministry of Finance and Danske Bank A/S. The 100MW Assela wind farm will be located between the towns of Adama and Assela, about 150 km south of the capital Addis Ababa. The country has set an ambitious target to supply 100 percent of domestic energy demand through renewable energy by 2030. Ethiopia’s National Electrification Programme aimed to reach universal access by 2024, with the help of off-grid solutions for 35 percent of the population.
As to documents, Ethiopia has abundant renewable energy resources with a potential 10GW of wind installation capacity. The Assela wind farm will contribute to clean and affordable power for the country’s electricity grid. Ethiopia has many renewable resources covering wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass, and the country aspires to be a power hub and the battery for the Horn of Africa. To date, the country has installed 3 wind farms with a capacity of 324MW. The Assela wind farm will be the country’s fifth wind farm, following Adama wind farm 1, Ashegoda wind farm, Adama wind farm 2, and the currently in development Aysha wind farm.
Ethiopia has managed to power only 25 percent of its population with electricity, according to the International Energy Agency. More than 50 million people lack access to energy. The government has prioritized universal access to electricity and aims to reach 100 percent electrification by 2025, with 35 percent of the population utilizing off-grid energy solutions and the other 65 percent of the country connected to the grid.
Green Legacy 2021: Ethiopia Plants over 6.7 billion Tree Seedlings
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has announced lat September the successful conclusion of the 2021 edition of the Green Legacy Initiative, a tree-planting push aimed at curbing the effects of climate change and deforestation in Ethiopia. Over 6.7 billion tree seedlings have been planted in the annual Green Legacy program which started on May 18, 2021, Ethiopian Monitor reported,
The performance shows the country has exceeded the target set by planting 7 million more seedlings during the 111-day long campaign.
“Congratulations to all Ethiopians in all corners of the country for finalizing a successful Green Legacy season this year with 6.7 billion seedlings planted, surpassing our set target,” Prime Minister Abiy said.
Launched in 2019, the East African nation has a plan to plant 20 billion trees nationwide within four years. Three years into the period, the country has managed to plant more than 18 billion tree seedlings. Abiy said the Green Legacy is a demonstration of national capacity to launch and complete activities and tasks per set targets.
The milestones achieved in the planning and implementation of the annual initiative need to be duplicated in various sectors, facilitating Ethiopia’s inevitable prosperity, according to the Prime Minister.
The future of Ethiopia depends on renewable energy
If the country takes the advantage of its rich resources of renewable energy, building sustainable energy is in the realm of possibility. The government has launched an ambitious plan to speed up the energy transition and support the construction of plants that use the country’s abundant renewable resources to diversify Ethiopian energy generation.
Even if Ethiopia is the fourth country, after Madagascar, Zambia, and Senegal, to opt for scaling solar energy, the country is still has been experiencing an energy deficit. As, a result, 60 million population don’t have access to electricity. Access to clean energy is the key to the development of the country as well in Africa, securing and sustaining renewable resources in the energy sector are the solutions for those challenges. The cost competitiveness, the availability of resources, and the fast time to market green technologies can contribute to the spread of energy sustainability in Ethiopia.
According to Ethiopian Herald, access to energy is among the key elements for the economic and social developments of the country. The energy sector in Ethiopia can be generally categorized into two major components: traditional and modern (traditional biomass usage and modern fuels that electricity and petroleum). As more than 80 percent of the country’s population is engaged in the small-scale agricultural sector and lives in rural areas, traditional energy sources represent the principal sources of Energy. Domestic energy requirements in rural and urban areas are mostly met from wood, animal dung, and agricultural residues.
Ethiopia is committed to speeding up its journey toward sustainable development and overcoming the many contradictions in the energy sector Ethiopia’s clean and renewable energy investment in energy production and distribution has won praise as an exemplary initiative for developing countries that helps facilitate and ensure social justice and sustainable development. The appreciation came during a forum entitled “Cooperation for Net-Zero and Climate Resilience: Ethiopian and Chinese Perspective” The event took place on the sidelines of the COP 26 session, organized in Glasgow.
Ethiopia’s Environment, Forest, and Climate Change Commission Commissioner Professor Fekadu Beyene said on the occasion that Ethiopia’s renewable energy development and provision are increasing with inclusiveness. In addition, Ethiopia’s energy production focuses on clean and green energy production with the goal of building a green economy considering the environmental protection and green development strategy of the country.
Professor Fekadu noted that Ethiopia has set a goal of building a green economy to become a middle-income developing country by 2030 and achieving “net-zero emission” by 2050. Hence, Ethiopia’s energy sector development gives due attention to meeting these targets by investing in hydro, wind, solar, and geothermal energy sources both on off-grid and grid sources. During the discussion, Chinese Government Foreign Development Investment and Ethiopia’s clean energy initiative and production were praised for their productiveness in achieving social justice by scholars.
Ethiopia is struggling and investing its maximum efforts in combating climate change by promoting green energy sources, planning to build a green economy, and similar efforts in the sector.
Ethiopia signs the Paris Agreement to respond to the threats of climate change, Herdan said adding, not only signing the agreement, Ethiopia is struggling and investing its maximum efforts in combating climate change by promoting green energy sources, planning to build a green economy, and similar efforts in the sector. In the energy sector, Ethiopia has huge potential for hydropower sources, solar energy sources, wind, and geothermal sources. Hence, he said, supporting Ethiopia to exploit its available potential sources of energy helps the country to generate additional energy in the country where tens of millions of people are still living without electrification especially in the rural areas of the country.