Fifty megawatt wind project proposed for coastal site

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A 50 MW wind plant in Ghana is being proposed by Swiss company NEK Umwelttechnik of Zurich. Wind speeds at the coastal site, 50 kilometres east of Tema, are between 6.8 m/s and 7.3 m/s at a hub height of 70 metres, says Christoph Kapp, owner and head of NEK. The turbine type has yet to be chosen. Kapp is seeking $50-80 million for the project, including CHF 500,000 already spent in 2000. Kapp has earmarked a further CHF 31.5 million for this year and is seeking CHF 40-60 million in 2002, when project construction will start. NEK is working in partnership with three organisations: the Deutsche Investment und Entwicklungsgesellschaft (DEG), a German state-owned development organisation based in Cologne; NewEn, a development company based in Bremen; and the African Development Bank in Nairobi. The project will create 200 local jobs, says NEK. The critical factors for success, says the company, are "logistic implementation on site in Ghana's coastal area and a guaranteed price for the green energy." The wind station's output will be fed into the grid of the Electricity Company of Ghana, ECG, which was recently partly privatised. Ghana has a shortage of electricity, notes Kapp. In power purchase negotiations with ECG and the government tariff authority he is hoping for a contract price of $0.08-0.12/kWh. Talks are due to conclude next month.

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