Wind energy in Tanzania, first wind farm in May

Tanzania is expected to celebrate the opening of its first wind farm next month, when a 2.4-MW wind power facility should finish testing and begin supplying the customers of a rapidly expanding private rural grid network.

The wind energy project is being financed with a USD-1.2-million (EUR 1.1m) loan from the Renewable Energy Performance Platform (REPP) that is supported by the UK government.

The wind farm will consist of three 800-kW Enercon wind turbines, which just recently arrived at the site in Mwenga in the Mufindi District of Tanzania’s Iringa region. Their installation and testing is seen to be concluded by early May.

Upon completion, the new wind farm will complement an existing 4-MW hydropower plant that has been powering the rural grid network since 2012. It supplies electricity to over 4,500 homes and businesses across 32 villages, with surplus power sold to Tanzania Electric Supply Co Ltd, better known as TANESCO.

Rift Valley Energy is the developer and operator of the private rural grid network and it plans to connect a further 1,500 customers over the next two years.