NewsEast & Horn AfricaU.N. appeals to support Somali's renewable energy initiative


Posted on Wednesday, 02 May 2018 14:48

U.N. appeals to support Somali's renewable energy initiative

By Reuters

A woman sells coal in Mogadiahu Photo: Farah Abdi Warsameh/AP/SIPASomalia is taking new steps to invest in renewable energy sources after years of conflict have led to serious depletion of the country's natural resources.

The United Nations is supporting the country's drive after a top official pledged for more international support to invest in Somalia's shift to clean energy.

During a tour of a local power plant, U.N. Secretary General's Special Representative for Somalia, Michael Keating, addressed the country's potential in developing its renewable energy sector.

Serious inflows into Somalia

"There is an opportunity for new investment. So investing in renewable energy sources and trying to bring the cost of energy down in ways that are good for the consumer but also protect the environment and perhaps bring communities together, because one option is if people have solar panels and if you can generate, have solar panels on your house, or in your village or in your street, you can actually contribute energy to the grid," he explained.

A Mogadishu-based energy company is actively working to invest in solar energy.

Official at Beco Power Generating Company said that generating 2.5- megawatts of solar energy would lead to cutting the use of 10,000 barrels of diesel.

"So it is real investment in renewable energy in Somalia, and that is what we are doing now," Beco's chief technical officer, Mohamed Farah Ali said.

The company plans to boost its solar energy generation capacity by 5.5-megawatts annually and reducing the use of fossil fuel to less than 40% of its total production, according to the U.N. assistance mission in Somalia.

The country has been at war for decades and until the last few years it has struggled to attract foreign investment. But rivalries in the nearby Arabian peninsula are resulting in serious inflows into Somalia.

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