Sunon Asogli Power Ghana Limited, has said it plans to inject US$650 million capital into the renewable energy sector but only if government lifts the ban on Power Purchase Agreement (PPAs).
The country’s largest Independent Power Producer (IPP), believes the investment will diversify the power generation mix and helps the country to meet its target of increasing percentage of power that comes from renewable resource – wind, solar, and waste-to-energy, among others, to 10 percent.
Elikplim Apetorgbor, Energy Trading, Research and Regulatory Affairs Manager at Sunon Asogli, highlighted their readiness to venture into the renewable market because it will bring to bear government’s vision of achieving 10 percent of renewable energy, hence the need to lift the current ban on PPAs.
“If government is really trumpeting increasing renewable energy, it is important that it lifts the ban on signing new PPAs and allow the private sector to also join. We are financially ready to invest,” Mr. Apetorgbor disclosed.
The comprehensive US$650 million renewable investment, he said, include a concluded feasibility study in the area of wind energy where Sunon Asogli wants to make an investment worth about US$127 million; another study being conducted into building a 100MW solar farm at Dawa in the Ada West District of the Greater Accra Region.
He therefore appealed to government to consider lifting the ban on signing new PPAs in order to allow the private sector invest and also consider engaging existing investors in the energy sector, particularly the IPPs, on how to increase renewable energy uptake in the country.
“We currently have a number of players or investors in the energy market that have to do with the IPPs and I do not think there is the need to allow new entrants onto the market. With the energy renewable policy that we have, government can allow the existing investors, those that are willing and have the capacity, to invest in the renewable energy sector.
So it will be very flexible with the existing IPPs who are already working with government when it comes to negotiations and the terms of this will transfer into the kind of tariff that we have. By the end of the day, government stands to benefit flexible negotiations and cheaper tariffs,” he said.
Chairman of Sunon Asogli Power Ghana, Yang Qun, speaking at a media engagement at Kpone in Accra, said his outfit is determined to diversify into wind, solar and waste energy. The plan, he noted, falls within the power producer’s commitment to sustain its growth and to protect the environment through clean energy sources.
The renewable energy plan is being spearheaded by the company’s development unit, which is working on expanding Suno Asogli’s footprints across Africa.
“The renewable energy industry is evolving rapidly and opportunities exists to specifically scale it up and encourage a true, global transformation,” he said, adding that this is being driven by the fact that many parts of the world still face power supply deficits and are eager for alternative solutions to fossil fuels to ensure energy security.
Mr. Yang Qun said Sunon Asogli is currently operating 560mw combined cycled power plant and recently added 800kwp capacity solar PVs for its internal use. In its decade of operations in the country, the company has generated more than 14,100.53GWh power to supplement the national grid.
Suno Asogli’s parent company, Shenzhen Energy – China, currently operates about 28 waste to energy power plants and manages the world’s largest waste to energy power plants in the Far East country, handling about 38,820 tonnes of waste daily.
Since 2018, government has placed a ban on signing new PPAs. This is because the country now has a total generating capacity of about 5,300MW, while peak demand is around 3, 200MW. As a result, government pays US$500 million annually for unconsumed/excess power.