The European Union is following through on its pledge to provide sustainable energy to 500 million people by 2030: It will be investing €25 million ($31.7 million) in the construction of Africa’s largest photovoltaic power plant in Burkina Faso.
The new power plant will be built in Zagtouli, a city near the capital Ouagadougou, and will house 96,000 solar panels. It is expected to generate 32 gigawatt-hours per year, or 6 percent of the country’s current electricity production, and cover energy usage of about 400,000 people there.
“The EU is committed to supporting a much-needed change in Africa’s production of sustainable energy. For Burkina Faso, this means massively improved supply of greener electricity, increased energy independence of the country, and a more secure energy supply for the population,” European Commissioner for Development Andris Piebalgs said in a press release.
The European Commission launched its energy initiative in April 2012, when President José Manuel Barroso made the pledge to expand sustainable energy access to half a million people in developing countries over the next 18 years. Among the proposals is the creation of a €50 million technical facility that will help support sustainable energy projects in developing countries.
Read more development news online, and subscribe to The Development Newswire to receive top international development headlines from the world’s leading donors, news sources and opinion leaders — emailed to you FREE every business day.