Namibia gets help with renewables plan

Wind power is one of the renewables detailed in recent co-operative talks between officials from Namibia and India. Namibia, in southern Africa, is facing serious power shortages. It also has significant coastal wind resources although little technical expertise. India is now offering "mutual assistance" in areas such as wind, solar and biomass. The issue of wind came up when Namibian energy minister Jesaya Nyamu met with India's minister for non-conventional energy sources, Shri Kannappan, on January 28, to discuss renewable energy. It is not the first time that wind has been considered at a high level in the government. Eighteen months ago, Namibia commissioned a study on wind potential -- and the government has also warned that power shortages could hit the nation within a few years. Wind is regarded as a potential leading solution (Windpower Monthly, November 1998). India is already helping with two renewables projects in Namibia. One is a demonstration program for the electrification of two Namibian villages using solar PV technology. The solar cells are being made in India by Central Electronics Ltd. Indian design and technology is also being used in the building of biogas plants in ten Namibian villages. Work training is part of the deal too. Three Namibians have been trained in India, while two Indians skilled in setting up biogas plants have been dispatched to the southern African nation.

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