Angola adds the most capacity to power generation in Africa

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By Desmond Davies, GNA London Bureau Chief

London, May 15, GNA – Angola newly installed
668 megawatts (MW) of hydroelectricity in 2018, makes it the number one African
country to add the most capacity to electricity generation from hydropower,
according to the 2019 Hydropower Status Report published to coincide with the
ongoing biennial World Hydropower Congress in Paris.

Zimbabwe (150
MW), the Democratic Republic of Congo (121 MW), Egypt (32 MW) and Uganda (24
MW) were the other leading African countries that increased capacity in
renewable hydroelectricity last year.

East Asia and
the Pacific once again added the most, 9.2 gigawatts (GW) followed by South
America (4.9 GW), South and Central Asia (4.0 GW), Europe (2.2 GW), Africa (1.0
GW) and North and Central America (0.6 GW).

The Hydropower
Status Report, published by the International Hydropower Association (IHA), is
an authoritative guide to key trends in hydropower development.

Compiled by the
IHA’s team of analysts, the report presents latest capacity and generation data
from over 200 countries and territories.

“Four years on
since the Sustainable Development Goals were agreed at the United Nations in
2015, governments increasingly recognise hydropower as playing a vital role in
national strategies for delivering affordable and clean electricity, managing
freshwater, combating climate change and improving livelihoods,” wrote IHA
Chief Executive Richard Taylor and IHA President Ken Adams in the foreword to
the report.

It also
features policy insights from leading government ministers responsible for
hydropower development, including Uganda’s Minister of Energy and Minerals,
Irene Nafuna Muloni.

She emphasised
the need to raise investment capital for hydropower development to widen
electricity access and support socio-economic transformation.

The World
Hydropower Congress is focusing on hydropower’s role in delivering on the Paris
Climate Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goals, under the theme: ‘The
Power of Water in a Sustainable, Interconnected World’.

Hundreds of
decision-makers, innovators and experts from over 70 countries are attending
the Congress.

Through
discussion sessions and workshops, participants have been sharing knowledge on
how hydropower can be financed, developed and operated sustainably.

The UK-based
IHA is a non-profit membership organisation formed in 1995.

It says it is
“committed to building and sharing knowledge on hydropower’s role in renewable
energy systems, responsible freshwater management and climate change
solutions”.

At the opening
of the Congress on Tuesday, IHA President Adams, underlined the importance of
collaboration between the hydropower sector and wider communities.

“The spirit of
IHA has always been to engage in dialogue with stakeholders from different
countries, sectors and backgrounds.

“We believe
that stronger outcomes are ensured when objectives are shared and dialogue is
open.

“The largest
community which we are all a part of is the human community, living on a planet
facing unprecedented stress and having to build consensus and achieve action to
build a more sustainable future,” Mr Adams said.

“We support the
Sustainable Development Goals and believe the targets set by the Paris
Agreement require us all to work harder to ensure that renewable energy can be
provided to all in a sustainable way,” he added.

The Executive
Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Fatih Birol, told the
Congress that despite its promise globally, investment in the renewable sector
had slowed.

He said the IEA
planned to dedicate its next renewable energy report to hydropower.

“Hydropower –
why are we so keen? Because of its potential, especially in Africa,” said Dr
Birol.

“Today in
Sub-Saharan Africa two out of three people have no access to electricity.
Morally, it is a shame for all of us.

“We think
hydropower can provide a lot of benefits to our societies, ranging from
electricity access in emerging economies, reduction of CO2 emissions, reduction
of air pollution, and we can nicely integrate it with solar and wind,” he
added.

GNA



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