ACEP Questions Power Sector Managers
Mohammed Amin Adam
The Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) has questioned why the Volta River Authority (VRA) bought turbines to be used in submarines for the 132-megawatt Takoradi 3 (T3) power plant.
According to Mohammed Amin Adam, Executive Director of ACEP, the $256 million thermal plant has been out of use for a couple of months after it was completed in November 2012.
Even though owners of the land on which the plant is situated have attributed the problems to the non-pacification of their gods, Mr Adam argued that the gods of Aboadze were not to blame.
‘It is not the gods. We made the wrong choice of plants. The turbines for T3 were configured to run in submarines and they were configured to run in low-temperature areas. As I speak to you, they have no commercial operation history. They have not been run anywhere, and now we have brought it to run in a high-temperature area,’ he said.
‘This is lack of due diligence. It is the lack of appropriate planning by our authorities and they must come out and explain why a taxpayer company like the VRA can invest so much in a 132-megawatt plant which Ghanaians cannot enjoy.’
The Takoradi T3 power plant is a combined-cycle power plant at the Volta River Authority (VRA) power station at Aboadze, near Takoradi. It was meant to expand the Takoradi Thermal Power Station capacity by 132MW or 24 percent.
The T-l and T-2 plants at the Aboadze Thermal Station have a combined generation capacity of 340 megawatts.
He mentioned that kerosene or aviation fuel would be the appropriate alternative fuel for the plant, yet the equipment has been configured to run on the expensive light crude oil.
The T-3 equipment was taken out of the country for repairs at an extra cost to the country.
Indicating that Ghana has over 2,800 megawatts of generation capacity with peak electricity demand currently around 2,000 megawatts, he emphasised: ‘Ideally, Ghana should not be in a power crisis. But the sector managers say that only around l,600 megawatts of generation capacity is available due to maintenance and fuel supply challenges, among others.’
The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is getting set to provide a power sector support package, but ACEP said the corporation must interrogate Ghana’s ‘ideal capacity.’
‘This is because if we do not take into consideration how to make all the over 2,840 megawatts available, how do we talk about bringing in new generation capacity?’ he asked.
(Pix saved as Mohammed Amin Adam in bus)
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