GHANA - AN OVERVIEW
Securing reliable energy supplies remains a major challenge in the 21st century as global population grows and modern life spreads to more and more people.
The other big energy challenge is climate change. When you connect these two global challenges together we have an opportunity. We have to produce much more energy with much less CO2
In order to meet the challenges of climate change and energy security Clenergen has sparked an unprecedented wave of innovation that can fuel economic growth.
In Ghana, Clenergen is seizing the energy opportunity by adding renewable energy to the needs of the people. Clenergen is introducing CO2-neutral energy to Ghana
- Ghana has experienced a stable political climate and an average annual GDP growth trend of nearly 5 percent over the past ten years.
- The country has enjoyed improved terms of trade.
- Improvements were made in the areas of tax administration, financial sector reform, the move to full cost recovery for electricity and water and governance.
- The government has announced plans to privatise the energy sector.
- In agriculture and forestry an energy company can find different types of biomass that can be used in energy production.
- Excess power generation by existing wood mills can be pumped onto the National Grid to supplement power requirements.
- The passing of the Renewable Energy Law to provide legal support for companies accessing the national grids is underway.
- The mining industry in Ghana is the key sector in the economy with the principle minerals produced being gold and diamonds.They need a continuous supply of energy to optimize full capacity production.
- Ghana has an active stock exchange.
Wood fuel is one of the main products of the forests. Approximately 60 percent of the world’s total wood removals from forest and outside forests are used for energy purposes. While the developed countries use only 30 percent of wood produced for energy, the developing countries use 80 percent for the same purpose. The bulk of energy supply in Ghana is met from wood fuels, i.e. firewood and charcoal. Wood fuels account for about 71±1 percent of total primary energy supply and about 60 percent of the final energy demand.
WOODFUEL DEMAND AND SUPPLY SITUATION
The bulk of wood fuels amounting to 90 percent are obtained directly from the natural forest. The remaining 10 percent is from wood waste i.e. logging and sawmill residue, and planted forests. The transition and savannah zones of Ghana, mainly the Kintampo, Nkoranza, Wenchi, Afram Plains, Damongo districts provide the bulk of dense wood resources for wood fuels.
However, wood fuel resources are depleting at a faster rate as a result of unsustainable practices in the production and marketing of the product that incurs high levels of waste. According to the UN Food 1 M.A. Trossero, FAO, Unasylva 211, Vol. 53, 2002 and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), the rate of deforestation in Ghana is 3% per year.
In 2000, the annual production or yield of wood was about 30 million tonnes of which about 18 million tonnes was available and accessible for wood fuels. Although the exploitation of wood resources for wood fuels is not the main cause of deforestation, there are indications that the preferred wood fuel species are gradually disappearing. The major charcoal production areas of Donkorkrom, Kintampo, Nkoranza, Wenchi, and Damongo show physical signs of depleted wood fuel resources. As a result, producers have to travel longer distances in search of wood for charcoal production. Also, the extensive use of less preferred wood species for fuel such as neem and wawa are becoming popular.
Since a majority of households, about 80% in Ghana depend on wood fuels for cooking and water heating in addition to commercial, industrial and institutional use, the demand for wood fuel has for the past years been on the increase. As indicated above about 18 million tonnes of fuel wood was used in year 2000. If this trend of consumption continues, Ghana is likely to consume more than 25 million tonnes of fuel wood by the year 2020.
ENERGY COMMISSION- RENEWABLE ENERGY DIVISION