Rwanda and DR Congo Officials meet over Kivu Methane Gas

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Officials from Rwanda and DR Congo have said it is time to end ‘mere talk’ and start concrete action on a joint exploitation of methane gas deposits in Lake Kivu, with an aim of producing energy for the people of both countries.

Officials of Rwanda & DR Congo in a meeting in Goma - DRC

The agreement for joint exploitation of methane gas in Lake Kivu dates back to 1975 when the two countries committed to work together to generate energy from the lake, but 40 years later, there is no tangible impact.

While the lake presents the potential of generating over 700 megawatts of methane gas, according to studies, only 26 megawatts have been extracted through the Kivuwatt project on the Rwandan side.

On 12th August 2016, President Paul Kagame and his Congolese counterpart, Joseph Kabila, met in Rubavu, Rwanda, and declared their willingness to develop a joint project for the production of electricity from methane gas in Lake Kivu, among other initiatives and announced through a final communiqué from the meeting that both Governments would rapidly proceed with the implementation of the project

Following the meeting, a joint technical committee was set up to discuss how the commitment of government leaders should be implemented.

On Thursday, 10th November 2016, officials from the two countries met in the Congolese town of Goma where they discussed the way forward. 

Hon. Dr. Vincent Biruta, the Minister for Natural Resources who led the Rwandan delegation to Goma, said Lake Kivu is endowed with a lot of shared resources that can be jointly exploited for the benefit of the people in both countries.

Group photo after the ministerial meeting in Goma - DRC

"There are resources we need to exploit together for the common development of our countries, there are agreements signed long ago under which both countries committed to work together on joint projects but some have derailed while others are in progress. Rwanda has made a breakthrough in exploiting methane gas; we have also started exploration for oil in the area. The resources are trans-border so we can work faster and efficiently together,” said Biruta.

Jean Bosco Mugiraneza, the Chief Executive Officer of Rwanda Energy Group (REG) and Chairperson of joint technical committee - Rwanda, said there are enough energy resources in the lake to significantly make a difference for the people of both countries.

“Kivuwatt Methane Gas to Power Plant  is generating electricity on the Rwandan side, and we are now looking at ways the second phase (Kivuwatt II project) can be pursued jointly,” said Mugiraneza, adding that research shows that up to 700 megawatts can be extracted from Lake Kivu for a period of at least 50 years. 

Speaking during the meeting, Aimé Ngoi Mukena Lusa Desiré, the Congolese Minister of Hydrocarbons, also emphasized the need to work together.

“We have talked and talked about cooperation in exploiting the resources in the Kivu area long enough; it is time to implement,” Ngoi said.

“The will of our Heads of State must prevail. Today, we are ready to start from what is there, Rwanda has started and if they have advanced, we are ready to catch up as they can also catch up on what we started.”

He added “other than energy; the two countries should also work on other projects, mainly roads’’.

Effective exploration of methane gas in Lake Kivu is expected to boost electricity generation in both Rwanda and DR Congo and accelerate economic growth in both countries.

The electricity access countrywide in Rwanda stands today at 27 per cent while DR Congo stands at about 20 per cent, according to officials    

Group photo: Joint Technical Committee Rwanda and DR Congo in a meeting in Rubavu, Rwanda

Kivuwatt methane gas to power barge (26MW)

Energy experts meet in 3rd version of iPAD Rwanda Energy Infrastructure Forum

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IPAD Rwanda 2016 brings over 200 participants to share experiences in energy sector

 

Kigali, 1-2 November 2016 An impressive list of experts from the energy sector are meeting in Kigali to address iPAD Rwanda 3rd version under the theme: “Rwanda’s Strategic Energy Outlook.” The forum gathered investors, project developers, finance houses, construction and planning companies, technology providers from Rwanda, the region and from the rest of the world as well as high-level government representatives.

 

The Minister of Infrastructure, Honorable James Musoni, delivered the welcome address and embraced the meeting as an opportunity for African Countries and the world to share experiences and come up with development strategies that promote energy infrastructure, and forge partnerships for Sustainable development. During the opening session, the Minister officially launched the Sustainable Energy for ALL (SE4ALL) Action Agenda in Rwanda.

 

Rwanda has officially become part of a global universal energy initiative, dubbed “Sustainable Energy for All,” a United Nations-led initiative geared toward actions and commitments to positively transform the world’s energy systems.

 

The decision was made, during the third annual iPAD Rwanda Energy Infrastructure Forum in Kigali, and the initiative will attempt to address the high dependence on biomass fuels in the country and reduce from the current 85 per cent use to about 50 per cent by 2020 while the target is fewer than 30 per cent by 2030.

 

Rwanda Energy Group chief executive Jean Bosco Mugiraneza said the agency targets to reach 70 per cent of the population and 100 per cent of government institutions by 2018.This creates a huge room for private public partnership to boost local capacities and make necessary investments towards the ambitions. More players are encouraged to invest in the off-grid power solutions provision operating in the country.

 

The meeting was also attended by Dr Cheluget Kipyego, the Assistant Secretary General-COMESA as a featured speaker during the official opening keynote session of iPAD Rwanda Energy Infrastructure Forum with focus on an overview of power trade and energy infrastructure within in the region.

 

 

Jean-Bosco Mugiraneza, the Rwanda Energy Group Chief Executive Officer, called for strengthening of public-private partnerships, saying this is critical to attract more funding to the energy sector to boost its capacity.

 

Rwanda Energy Group Chief Executive Officer, Jean-Bosco Mugiraneza speaks during the meeting

 

Rwanda targets 563MWby 2018, currently with the installed capacity of 190MW and has an electricity penetration rate of about 27% with grid solutions contributing a majority of 25% while off-grid solutions contribute 2%.

 

IPAD Rwanda was organised by Spintelligent, leading Cape Town-based trade exhibition and conference organiser, and the African office of Clarion Events Ltd, based in the UK. Other flagship events in Spintelligent’s power portfolio on the continent are African Utility Week, the West African Power Industry Convention (WAPIC), East African Power Industry Convention (EAPIC) and iPAD Cameroon Energy Infrastructure Forum.

Energy Development Corporation Limited signs cooperation agreements with off-grid IPPS

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Independent power producers in a group photo with REG Management after agreement signing at Lemigo Hotel.

Kigali, October 12, 2016– Energy Development Corporation Limited (EDCL) signed Cooperation Agreements with off-grid Independent Power Producers (IPPs) for providing access to electricity in off-grid areas of Rwanda. This was done in the efforts to provide electricity access in off-grid areas of Rwanda where the Government encourages the private sector to participate in implementation of the Government's energy programs.

IPPs will be responsible for supplying, installing and provide maintenance services of installed systems whereas EDCL will be responsible for the project supervision and coordination with beneficiaries & other Government institutions. The systems to be installed will be in line with Rural Electrification Strategy promotion.

According to Emmanuel Kamanzi, the Managing Director EDCL, the system payment will be done by beneficiaries themselves and will be composed of down payment and a debt payable on monthly basis until the system cost is covered.

This partnership mechanism between the Public and Private Sector will enable to achieve the 2017/2018  Governments’ electrification target whereby, 48% of the households will be supplied by national grid and the remaining  22% will be electrified with off-grid solutions such as mini-grids (small hydro, solar and hybrid systems) and standalone PV systems.

The systems will provide lighting, phone charging, TV connections, refrigeration, pumping and will be best for commercial and industrial services because they meet standards.

 

  1. Mobisol
  2. NESELTEC
  3. NOTS
  4. Ignite Power
  1. 3EPOWER from Rwanda
  2. DASSY Enterprises from Rwanda
  3. ELARAI Global Services Ltd from Kenya
  4. Energy Resources Power from Rwanda
  5. GECO Ltd from Rwanda
  6. Global Evolution Energy from Rwanda
  7. Ignite Power Rwanda

 

  1. Nguvu Utilities Rwanda from Rwanda
  2. NURU East Africa Ltd from Rwanda
  3. Off – Grid Electric from Rwanda
  4. Serve and Smile Ltd from Rwanda
  5. SOLAR KIOSK from Rwanda
  6. TASS from Uganda
  7. Vision Technologies from Rwanda

 

The project is part of the government’s initiative fast-track electricity program in rural and urban areas in Rwanda