President Edgar Lungu says government is looking at ways of finding alternative sources of energy in the generation of electricity to supplement hydro power supply which is not enough to meet the whole country’s demand.
The President said alternative sources of energy such as solar would help the country cope with the effects of climate change which he said has adversely affected the current hydro power generation.
The President noted that the country’s energy sector has been badly affected by the effects of climate change which resulted in poor rainfall pattern.
“In some areas we had too much rain while in other areas we had very little rain. All those are consequences of climatic change problems which we are struggling with. I am glad that France is putting more efforts towards finding solutions to these problems,” the President told the visiting French Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy who paid a courtesy call on him at State House yesterday.
The Head of State said the country is also striving to find ways of reducing on importation of petroleum products by embarking on establishment of projects that will ensure the country gets renewable sources of energy.
President Lungu told the visiting Minister that Zambia is ready to welcome partnerships with France in the area of energy because the country is looking at finding alternative sources of energy and require investment in that sector.
He said the country has vast unexploited land and forest which could be used to produce cheap energy using ecological friendly methods.
And The Visiting French Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy Segolene Royal was quick to note that Africa is the victim of global warming hence the need for efforts to find solutions to problems that have been created by the phenomenon.
Mrs Royal told the President that there is need to mobilize international finance amounting to US$100 million from Copen Hagen to quickly finance projects such as alternative sources of energy like solar to reduce dependence on hydro-electricity.
She said her delegation is in Zambia to find out priority areas of investment but observed that solar energy projects seem to be vital for the country.
The Visiting Minister led a delegation comprising French Ambassador to Zambia Emmanuel Cohet who is also special representative to COMESA, French President’s Deputy Advisor for Africa Thomas Melonio, Scientific Adviser for Environmental, Bioversity and Climate Gilles Boeuf and the Advisor in charge of Bioversity, Landscape and Agro-ecology Vincent Jechoux.