Local time: Monday, 17 February 2020 04:08:38hrs
I am looking for: 

Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources (MMEWR)
Rebuttal: Media Reports on Alleged Costly Short Term Power S...
29/06/10
Rebuttal: Media Reports on Alleged Costly Short Term Power Supply Options   SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT -MEDIA REPORTS ON ALLEGED COSTLY SHORT TERM POWER SUPPLY OPTIONS   Media reports, as contained in the following newspaper articles:-   1.     Mmegi of 22nd June 2010 entitled “Diesel power plant to cost a heavy P29 Billion.”   2.     The Botswana Gazette of Wednesday 23-29 July 2010 entitled “Botswana’s short term energy options costly - World Bank”

SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT -MEDIA REPORTS ON ALLEGED COSTLY SHORT TERM POWER SUPPLY OPTIONS

 

Media reports, as contained in the following newspaper articles:-

 

1.     Mmegi of 22nd June 2010 entitled “Diesel power plant to cost a heavy P29 Billion.”

 

2.     The Botswana Gazette of Wednesday 23-29 July 2010 entitled “Botswana’s short term energy options costly - World Bank”

Refer.

 

Before setting the record straight on the accuracy of the contents of the above captioned articles, the Ministry of Minerals, Energy and Water Resources thanks all the participants for actively participating in the 21st June 2010 Energy Pitso. We know that without the continued engagement with stakeholders on the challenges that are currently facing Botswana, on the provision of reliable, affordable and environmentally sustainable energy services, the Government’s efforts to improve the quality of life for Batswana will be greatly impaired.

 

The Ministry would also like to thank, in particular, the media for the excellent coverage of the Energy Pitso as it is through wider media coverage that we access most of our stakeholders. 

 

The above notwithstanding, the Ministry would like to make factual corrections to the contents of the aforementioned articles.

 

At the Energy Pitso and newspaper articles that are a subject of this statement, reference was made to the World Bank report on the US$ 4 billion per year.

 

The Ministry quotes an extract of a subtitle in the World Bank Report, which reads “The economic cost of the energy deficit for Botswana’s growing economy is enormous amounting to an average of US $ 2 - 4 billion per year in lost production.” This is an October 2009 report.

 

The quote gives an estimate of damage inflicted on an economy in terms of quantities of finished products or goods and services. The emphasis on the World Bank report was on the foregoing not the cost of the diesel to the emergency power plant as captured in the articles cited above.

 

However, two issues arise from the World Bank extract which are:-

 

1.      Level of cost to the economy arising from the power supply and demand deficit in the absence of short term measures and

 

2.      By implication, the cost to the economy of mitigating measures being undertaken by the Government to reduce the impact of the power supply and demand deficit.  

 

 

Since the report was published, the Government, through Botswana Power Corporation (BPC), has put in place short term measures to address the power supply and demand mismatch including:-

 

1.      Commissioning of 70MW Energy supply facility at Matshelagabedi.

 

2.      Importation of 50 MW power from Mozambique albeit off peak hours.

 

3.      Development of 90MW Open Cycle Gas Turbines at Orapa

 

4.      Energy Efficiency, centred on using less energy for same output, which includes introduction of compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and control of water heaters.

 

5.      Botswana Power Corporation continues to source inexpensive power from the region as and when it is available.

 

Level of cost to the economy arising from the power supply and demand deficit

 

Arising from the measures cited above, BPC has hitherto been able to meet the power needs of industry, albeit at reduced reliability.  

 

The cost to the economy of mitigating measures being undertaken by the Government to reduce the impact the power supply and demand deficit.

As a result of the short term measures cited above, the 70 MW Diesel Power Plant in Matshelagabedi which came into operation in January 2010 is only used during peak hours 0700hrs to 1000hrs and 1800hrs to 2100hrs, as and when the need arises.  The average monthly bill of operating the power plant is P12 million per month and an annualized figure of P144million.

Furthermore, when the 90 MW Orapa plant is commissioned in October 2010 the operation costs will be similar which will bring the operation costs of the two power plants to about P288 million per year, which goes to show that the P29billion in Mmegi and US$ 4billion in the Gazette have nothing to do with operation costs of the diesel power plants.

 

It is imperative for the Nation to note that the numbers cited in both the Gazette of 23-29 June 2010 and Mmegi of Tuesday 22nd June 2010 have nothing to do with operation of the diesel power plants or meeting Botswana’s short term energy needs.

Printable version
Copyright © 2011 Government of Botswana. All rights reserved.