The Savannah Development Policy Think Tank has commended President Akufo-Addo led government for initiating moves to increase the contribution of solar power to the country’s energy mix.
It said government demonstrated its commitment when it did not hesitate in ratifying the International Solar Alliance (ISA) framework agreement and that the President put further action to the ratification by attending the ISA summit in New Delhi, India.
Mr Abu Kansangbata, Acting Executive Director of the Savannah Development Policy Think Tank gave the commendation in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Wa.
He said it was unfortunate that in the abundance of sunshine across many parts of the country especially in Northern Ghana, solar energy was only contributing one per cent to the energy mix as reported from the President’s speech at the summit.
He said successive governments apart from highlighting the importance of solar energy have not made giant steps such as this to utilise the abundance of sunshine that would see to the increase in the contribution of solar energy to the energy mix, adding that the government deserved a pat on the back for such a bold step.
“The President’s intervention in India is timely and ought to be commended”, the Executive Director of the Savannah Development Policy Think Tank said.
Mr. Kansangbata said solar energy has the potential to reduce the burden of high tariffs on electricity consumers, adding that it could also be used to subsidise irrigation agriculture to promote dry season farming and to boost household incomes.
He said solar panels installed in educational institutions and health facilities in remote communities could also help reduce cost burden of electricity on the government, thereby, allowing the government more fiscal space to concentrate on other equally important areas.
He added that solar energy could also help address the challenge of intermittent power cuts popularly known in Ghana as “dumsor” and provide jobs for the teeming unemployed youth in the country.
This, he said could lead to a reduction in the recent upsurge in criminal activities such as armed robbery and would create a congenial environment for business and economic activities to thrive in the country.