One or more development companies must commit to jointly operating an 800 kW wind plant near Gao in northeast Mali with the Energie du Mali utility before German aid organisation Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) is prepared to back a feasibility study for the project. Gao's electricity supply, like that of many towns in Mali and neighbouring countries, is provided by stand-alone diesel-generation. Wind measurements at Gao have revealed wind speeds of about 5.9 m/s at 50 metres. This means generation costs of about EUR 0.154/kWh, much less than the diesel generation costs of EUR 0.26/kWh, which would include diesel transport from Bamako to Gao. German company Deutsche Windguard has already carried out preliminary work on the proposal on behalf of the Mali government. It believes this pilot wind project could be followed by many others in the Sahel region, says GTZ's Jasper Abramowski.
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