Senegal has already started construction work on a major solar project in Sub-Saharan Africa with the 20MW Senergy 2 project in Bokhol.
The US$28 million project was developed by GreenWish Partners – a French renewable energy platform devoted to exploits in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Senergy 2 was also financially backed by the Senegalese state; with financial support from the UK and Norway through their joint investment vehicle Green Africa Power, according to local news.
Considered one of the largest solar project in Sub-Saharan Africa the project it is expected to supply 160,000 people with clean power and will help in achieving the country’s goal for 20% renewables by 2017 while focusing on entering a ‘new clean energy period’ according to Senegalese president Macky Sall who spoke at the ground –breaking ceremony for the park.
“With no energy there can be neither growth nor development. With the Bokhol facility, we are now able to take a new step and Senegal comes unreservedly into a new, clean energy period,” said President Macky Sall.
This new venture comes as Senegal is eager to ascertain itself as a leader in renewables in West Africa, which falls behind other nations of the continent such as South Africa and Morocco, in terms of clean energy generation.
Senegal has currently made plans to install seven off-grid solar projects in partnership with the non-profit organization Solar Village Project. The villages where the arrays were installed had no previous access to electricity. The systems are planned to be installed over a two-week phase in early 2017.
Various projects in South Africa surpass that of Senergy 2 with other states also making plans for large utility-scale solar schemes including Kenya.
Greenwish Partners was founded in 2010 by Charlotte Aubin-Kalaidjian and Gilles Parmentier following careers in energy investment banking and infrastructure. They have successfully developed over 20GW of renewable energy projects and over $10 billion in financing.