Ghana does not have excess capacity technically though on the face value one can say so, think-tank The Energy & Associates Ghana has said.
It insists that one can only talk about excess capacity when there is surplus power between generation and consumption on the basis of a 100 percent electrification access rate.
But, currently, Ghana has some 18 percent lack in access to power, according to data from the Energy Commission.
The Energy & Associates pointed these out in response to claims that the country produces excess capacity, leading to the wrongful cancellation of power agreements like the one between the government and Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC) Limited in 2018.
“The question non-technical people keep asking is whether or not we have excess capacity of power?
“On the face of it, one can comfortably say YES there is excess capacity of power, looking at our current consumption of 3400MW as against 5000MWplus of installed capacity.
“However, technically we do not have excess capacity. Indicating a current unmet deficit of about 500MW, this excludes the consumption of Valco (operating at full blast) and 18% of ‘spin reserve’ requirement as the lowest threshold of consumption.”
It pointed out that huge investments made in the power sector between 2013 and 2016 saw the target of 5,000MW of generation met.
But consumption has been within range, making many to believe there is excess capacity.
“If system capacity is exactly equal to demand, the slightest increase in demand or when one power plant cannot operate at its optimum capacity, there will be shortage and will result in load shedding,” it stressed.
“Let me also emphasize that looking at our projected consumption against government’s committed project, there is the need to increase generation of nothing less than 500MW else we will go back to crises in just 3 years to come.”
It projects that Ghana will return to crises in 2025 as peak load will be 4,921MW against a dependable generation of 4,870MW.
“This will result in a deficit and we will be back in crises.
“Hence, there is no such a thing called excess capacity in Ghana as the current government claims.”
By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh|3news.com|Ghana