Electricity for Senegal

A German micro-energy provider, a Senegalese-German development programme and committed village communities are bringing electricity to Senegal’s remote communities. They are even winning international awards for their innovative business model. With access to energy, villagers can inject new life into the local economy.

The only village communities eligible as project partners are those which are engaged in self-organisation and have at least one public institution such as a school or health centre. The programme also provides advisory services to the Senegalese Government on issues such as the feed-in tariff regulation for renewable energies. The development partnership with INENSUS links in with this work. ‘The villagers have to want our model and organise themselves accordingly,’ says INENSUS Managing Director Nico Peterschmidt. To ensure that access to energy boosts the local economy in Sine Moussa Abdou, a microfinance organisation was also brought on board. With an electric sewing machine, the local tailor is now earning a far higher income. Some of the local women have opened a village shop equipped with a refrigerator, and internet access will be coming soon. Other donors and private investors are also showing an interest in the model. A Dutch fund has already pledged financial resources for the electrification of a further 30 villages with a total population of 30,000.

The micro wind power plant in the village of Sine Moussa Abdou in Senegal only produces a few kilowatts, but it is enough to provide the 900 people who live there, 70 families in all, with a reliable power supply. The technology and private-sector business model were supplied by a German company, INENSUS GmbH, which set up a joint venture with a Senegalese company and built a small wind power plant as part of a development partnership with the Programme to promote rural electrification and a sustainable supply of domestic fuel (PERACOD). The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH is implementing the programme on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

Electricity for rural communities: the priority

Since 2004, GIZ has assisted the Senegalese Government and local businesses in efforts to provide energy access for 265 remote villages with a total population of 90,000 by 2016. The programme also receives funding from the Netherlands.

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Assani-Massourou Dahouenon
mansour.dahouenon@giz.de

'The villagers have to want our model and organise them­selves accordingly.'
Nico Peterschmidt, INENSUS GmbH

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