Zambia should turn to renewable energy-CEC

Written by on July 28, 2019


ZAMBIA’S continued dependency on hydro power supply is making it vulnerable to effects of climate change, says Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) managing director Owen Silavwe.

Mr Silavwe charged that currently hydro power in Zambia accounted for 80percent of power while 20percent is thermal.

He said that should not be the case and time had come for Zambia to start looking around the globe and learn from other countries that were doing well with energy renewables.

Mr Silavwe said between 2015- 2016 Zambia was affected by power shortages which also affected the economic development adding that that situation was back again this year.

He said that it is high time Zambia shifted from hydro dependency and think of other ways of generating power such as the renewables.

In an interview with journalists on the sidelines of the inaugural National Economic Summit in Livingstone, Mr Silavwe said with effects of climate change, it cast doubts on whether Zambia should continue depending on hydro.

“As you are aware this country is predominantly hydro and at the moment 80percent is hydro and then the rest is thermal. Now, this makes Zambia vulnerable to issues of climate change that we are dealing with across the globe,

“Just to get you back, you would like to recall the water shortage of 2015-2016 and we are back to that situation in 2019 and obviously as a country, we need to look for sustainable ways in ensuring that we stop this experience of water shortages each time we have a full or partial drought,” said Mr Silavwe.

It was imperative for Zambia to consider other sources of energy systems because the effect of climate change was beginning to cast some doubts in people’s minds whether the nation should continue with hydro system.

Mr Silavwe said that in terms of looking at the solution, Zambia needed to look around the world for examples where it could learn from, like in Europe.

He said that in Europe, countries were moving from the use of coal to energy renewables in combination with hydro.

“In terms of policy direction and regulations, we need to focus more on renewables because through this, we will be able to combine with hydro and take advantage of endowed natural resources we have,

“The country is on the right path, the political will is there, if you look at the number of programmes that the government is supporting, you will see that the political will is there,” he said.

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