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Exploring Wind Power as the Solution to Africa's Energy Shortages

Darling National Demonstration Wind Farm in Cape Town, South Africa
Darling National Demonstration Wind Farm in Cape Town, South Africa.
(cc) warrenski

In a recent survey conducted by the International Quality and Productivity Centre (IQPC), 64.28% of the 2,754 energy sector respondents have chosen wind power as the principle solution to meet Africa’s growing energy demand. This topic will be further explored at IQPC’s Wind Power Development and Implementation conference, taking place in Cairo, Egypt from 12-15 December 2010.

Economic growth in the region has been mirrored by an increased requirement for electricity – and the result? The continent has seen a rapid increase in renewable energy projects to supply energy needs.

Africa not only faces electricity shortages but also consistent and lengthy power cuts. Earlier this year the Egyptian Electricity Ministry had to ration out national power by inducing power outages as a direct result of higher electricity consumption. For a country without oil reserves, renewable energy becomes an even bigger necessity.

The Moroccan government has ambitious plans to have installed 2000 megawatts of wind energy by 2020. Morocco’s King Mohammed VI inaugurated a 250 million euro (300 million dollar) wind farm near Tangiers, which is currently the biggest in Africa.

However, Kenya is also competing to open Africa’s biggest wind farm and is back in the running following a government guarantee for financing the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project, which plans to produce 300MW in Marsabit.

The Global Wind Energy Council has predicted global installed wind capacity to reach 200 gigawatts by the end of 2010. Steve Sawyer, Secretary General of the GWEC, says: “As wind power is becoming more competitive, it is rapidly expanding beyond the traditional markets in North America and Europe. In fact, around half of the growth is now happening in emerging economies and developing countries.”

Key speakers at Wind power Development and Implementation include Eskom’s Chief Engineer, Riaan Smit; Senior Investment Officer/Energy Expert of the African Development Bank, Youssef Arfaoui; Egyptian Environmental Affairs Agency’s General Director of Energy Projects, Dr. Hisham El Agamawy and KenGen’s Chief Engineer, Christopher Maende.

Wind Power Development and Implementation conference has been designed to provide an insight into the practical and technical issues surrounding wind farm projects. Through detailed presentations, interactive panel discussions, case studies, and two extensive workshop days this event will tackle key challenges faced when developing a commercially viable wind farm.

IQPC provides practical conferences, large scale events, topical seminars, and in-house training programs, keeping business executives up-to-date with industry trends, technological developments, and the regulatory landscape. IQPC produces more than 1,800 events annually around the world, and continues to grow. Founded in 1973, IQPC now has offices in major cities across six continents including: Bengaluru, Berlin, Dubai, London, New York, Sao Paulo, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, and Toronto.

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