The Export of Electricity from Ghana
Ghana’s electricity situation has improved so much in the recent years that the country is now exporting electricity to its neighbours. Electricity fluctuations and long hours without power are now things of the past. With its gas resources from Jubilee Field and hydroelectric turbines, the country has managed to overcome, to a certain extent, the shortage of electricity it was facing in the 1990s and early 2000s. However, there is still lot to be done.
Ghana Electricity Needs and Electricity Export
The Volta River Authority has six 127 megawatt turbines, which are the main source of electricity in the country. The power plant located at Akosombo is responsible for supplying major bulk of the electricity used in the country, with 60 percent of the electricity produced is bought by Valco for running its smelter. However, this power plant also exports electricity to the neighbouring countries of Benin and Togo.
The remaining electricity needs of the country are met by the Electricity Corporation of Ghana, which uses diesel to manufacture electricity, as well as a smaller hydroelectric plant at Kpong and mining companies. The Bui Dam located on the Black Volta River is the one that has helped Ghana overcome the deficit. The electricity produced here is also exported to Cote d’Ivoire and Burkina Faso.
The road to self-sufficiency was not easy, as
the country found it difficult to get investment for the
450-megawatt hydroelectric plant at the Bui Dam. However, the
World Bank funded a programme under the aegis of the
International Development Association and this helped Ghana
provide reliable electricity to urban areas as well as the
southern parts of the country. Furthermore, in 1989, the
national grid was extended to the northern region and this
helped the northern part of the country get electricity from
Plans are afoot to link the power
transmission system in Ghana to all the countries in West
Africa, with the aim of having a power pool. This will help all
the countries in this region to consolidate their
While Ghana is exporting electricity to
neighbouring countries, like Nigeria and Benin, most of its
rural areas still live in darkness. This is primarily because of
limited funding, poverty and the cost of renewable energy. So,
while urban communities are seeing improvement in the supply of
electricity, the poor have not had an improvement in their
quality of life.
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