Tanzania seeks to harness wind energy

Constrained by insufficient power generated from water dams and thermal stations, Tanzania is seeking to produce 50 megawatts from a wind farm in the next 15 months.

Under a deal signed by the National Development Corporation (NDC) on behalf of the government and the Eastern Africa Power Pool (EAPP), Tanzania will have its first wind turbines installed in the central Singida Region at a cost of US$123 million.

”I am happy that the deal has finally been firmed up and in the coming 15 months we shall have 50 megawatts of wind power added to the national grid. This will be a big relief to the country," said Industry and Trade deputy minister Lazaro Nyalandu.

The government is holding 51 percent shares in the wind power project and Nyalandu said that it would generate electricity at a very low cost, compared to hydropower and thermal stations. Installation of wind turbines will start in February next year.

In March this year, Tanzania joined EAPP, a regional initiative that involves eight countries with support from Norway, to develop a competitive power market by increasing access to reliable, affordable and environmentally-friendly energy in rural areas. Other member countries of EAPP are Burundi, DR Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda and Sudan.