Somaliland: Generating the power to drive development

The UK aid-funded Energy Security and Resource Efficiency in Somaliland (ESRES) programme aims to improve access to affordable electricity for communities by diversifying energy sources through the promotion of renewables and the development of an appropriate policy and regulatory framework. ESRES is now in its second phase.

Mott MacDonald is responsible for the day-to-day management of the programme, developing regulatory standards and providing technical assistance to the private sector and Government of Somaliland.

In Phase 1, we successfully ran a pilot with hybrid mini-grids, which combine solar energy with diesel generation for more reliable, cost effective, sustainable power. This allowed us to gather the experience to create the Somaliland Renewable Energy Fund (SREF), which was launched in April 2019 as part of Phase 2.

Just goes to show these programmes really are not worth the paper they are written on. In all these years (6 years I think) this program has been running all they have added to Somalilands generating capacity is 1.9 MW. To put that into scale the single solar plant that the UAE built in Berbera generates 8MW (recently increased by 1 MW from the original 7). The amount of political capital they get out of writing their fancy reports way outstrips the actual benefit to Somaliland.

  • Up to 42% price reductions in targeted areas
  • Increased Somaliland’s generating capacity by 1.9 MW
  • Reduced the reliance on diesel-powered generation
  • Cut carbon emissions by 2,913 tonnes CO2e annually

Commercial Fleet’s calculator found the average truck’s carbon footprint to be 201,834 kilograms or 223 tons of carbon dioxide.

So they’ve reduced carbon emissions by about the equivalence of how much 11 trucks produce in a year! With the oncoming Berbera corridor, there could be as many as 1000 trucks using that road a day!

Hopefully we leave the beggars can’t be choosers stage ASAP!

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