Government through the Rural Electrification Authority (REA) is set to deploy over 15,000 solar home systems and develop solar mini-grids in rural areas that are not connected to the national grid.
REA Chief Executive Officer, Clement Sikazwe says solar energy remains one of the key technologies, the authority will continue to deploy to increase access to electricity services in rural Zambia.
ZANIS reports that Mr Silavwe was speaking in Lusaka today, when REA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEP), aimed at supporting Zambia’s broader electrification efforts with advanced data collection and analysis.
Mr Silavwe stated that the data platform has been developed to collect and analyze data for power Africa beyond the Grid Fund for Zambia.
He said all the solar projects to be undertaken in future will now be uploaded on the platform including the 15,000 solar home systems and 5 solar mini-grid under the 2021 work plan.
“Through utilizing the Edison Data platform, REA will now be able to utilize project data on the platform and this will improve on project monitoring and management and will enhance our ability to monitor the operation of solar energy deployment,” Mr Silavwe said.
He further said REA has launched the commencement of the smart capital subsidy project dubbed “off-grid rural smart subsidy programme which is being funded by the World Bank.
“This programme intends to encourage the private sector to participate in the provision of renewable energy in Zambia,” Mr Silavwe said.
He said the partnership with REEP will avail to the Authority, a state of the art data platform called energy data intelligence system for off-grid networks which will be able to collect data from the sensors.
And REEP Director General, Magadalena Kouneva, said under the MoU, REEP will provide capacity building to REA in data collection and analytics which are much-needed skills in the energy sector.
REA has been executing its mandate of increasing access to electricity in rural areas of the country using different technologies.