The Ethiopian Energy Authority announced its plan to begin the Tulu Moye 520 MW geothermal electric energy project at a total cost of 2.5 Billion USD in Oromia State, West Arsi Zone. Tesfaye Kessa, Director of Geothermal Resource Development License and Administration Directorate with the Authority said that the Authority has been undertaking a number of activities to commence the project and to benefit the community by enhancing energy sources.
Unlike other sources of energy, geothermal energy is sustainable and it does not affect the environment adversely. “When we compare with hydro energy though it is a renewable source of power, if there is shortage of rain, it does not generate the required amount of energy,” he said. The project would have greater advantages for the social and economic growth of the country in terms of reducing power outages, he added.
Mentioning that Ethiopia had no geothermal proclamation in earlier years, he said that the newly enacted Geothermal Resource Development Proclamation plays role to develop the available energy resources and promotes the participation of private investment in the sector thereby achieve accelerated development.
As to him, 24 geothermal potential areas are identified at different parts of the country. Though Ethiopia is blessed with geothermal energy, high operational cost to construct geothermal projects and lack of skilled human power in this sector is challenging it to develop the source.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tulu Moye Geothermal, Darrell Boyed said that the Company is currently performing various works in the project site including opening offices in the project site and in Addis Ababa as well as constructing road at the project site.
He noted that as the project requires a high cost, it requires the support of anchor international institutions. So far, US Trade and Development Agency has shown interest to support the project, he added.
Source: The Ethiopian Herald
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