The U.S. Trade and Development Agency awarded a grant on September 25th, to NextGen Solawazi Limited to support the development of a 60-megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant in Shinyanga, a city in northwestern Tanzania.
The grant supports a feasibility study that will evaluate the technical and commercial viability of the power plant, conduct environmental and social impact assessments, and provide the necessary analysis for NextGen Solawazi to seek implementation financing. This project is critically important to Tanzania’s economic growth as, according to the World Bank, only 15 percent of its population has access to electricity.
“USTDA is pleased to continue our work with NextGen Solawazi to develop renewable energy in Tanzania,” said Director Leocadia Zak, who signed the grant agreement along with NextGen Solawazi Limited Managing Director Mayank Bhargava.“This project presents a valuable opportunity to draw upon U.S. technical expertise to deploy new energy generation capacity in Shinyanga.”
“Tanzania’s National Strategy for Poverty Reduction and Growth has identified limited power generation capacity and poor electricity access as the most critical issue for development,” said Mr. Bhargava.“Energy generation from the solar plant will not only electrify an estimated 210,000 households, but also act as a catalyst to attract other commercial enterprises by providing reliable, plentiful and cheaper electricity.”
The feasibility study will be undertaken by U.S. engineering and technical consulting company Clean Energy Consulting & Education, LCC (Phoenix, Ariz.).
The project builds upon the Agency’s previous collaboration with NextGen Solawazi, including the provision of an Owner’s Engineer who is supporting efforts to build a 5-MW solar plant in Kigoma, Tanzania.Both of these projects advance the goals of Power Africa, a U.S. government-led initiative to add cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity across the sub-continent.
The United States is proud to work with its partner, Tanzania, to help provide clean, safe, and renewable energy to meet the needs of growing and vibrant population.