VRA holds open forum at Ekumfi for Ghana’s 1st coal power plant

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in collaboration with the Volta River Authority (VRA), has held a public forum to assess the environmental impact of the proposed 2x350MW super critical coal-fired power plant at Ekumfi Aboano in the Central Region.

The forum, which was held in the Ekumfi District on Thursday, was attended by chiefs, opinion leaders and the inhabitants of the five coastal communities that would be affected by the project.

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These predominantly fishing communities are, Aboano, Immuna, Otuam-Kontankore, Kokodo and Sarfa-Npoano.

The $1.5 billion project which is being funded by the Chinese African Development Fund would be constructed by Shenzhen Energy during a period of five years, and would add 700MW to the national grid and later expand to 2000MW in the next twenty years.

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The project, which forms part of government’s efforts to solve the perennial power supply, would attract two million tons of coal annually from South Africa to power the plant.

A three member committee was set up to put together all the concerns of the communities since this is the first coal power plant in Ghana.

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The Member of Parliament for the Ekumfi Constituency, Abeiku Crenstil, appealed to the contractors to consider employing the youth in the area for the project.

The District Chief Executive (DCE) of the Ekumfi District Assembly, Mr. Ibrahim Kweku Dawson, said the project would transform the district with developmental projects.

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“I am very much aware that the successful execution of this project would put Ekumfi District on a higher pedestal. The project would open up the District to the international community, create jobs for our numerous young men and women during the construction and the operational stages of the plant and bring about the unprecedented development of other infrastructure such as roads, mini harbors, warehouses, residential and office accommodation.”

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The Technical Manager of VRA at Aboadze Thermal Plant, Engineer Jacob Yawson, in an interview with Citi News, said they have put in place some measures in order not to compromise the health and the safety of the inhabitants.

By: Akwasi Koranteng/citifmonline.com/Ghana

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