Karpower barge begins to feed national gri

The Karpower barge has started feeding the national grid with 235 megawatts (MW) of electricity, officials have said.

In a statement on Friday, offi- cials of Karpower said the move would help improve power supply to consumers.

It said another powership with 235MW installed capacity, was expected to arrive in the first half of next year.

After numerous postponements, the barge finally arrived at the Tema Port on November 26. It was connected to the national grid early this month after a grand welcome ceremony on November 29.

The statement said: “Karadeniz Powership Aysegul Sultan has achieved Commercial Operations after having been connected to the national grid. Aysegul Sultan, the first Powership in Ghana with an installed capacity of 235 MW, will significantly help ameliorate the power supply in the country.

A second powership, also with 235MW installed capacity, is ex- pected to arrive in Ghana in the first half of 2016.” “

A Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) was signed between the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and Karpowership Gha- na Company Limited. As per the PPA, two Powerships would gen- erate a total of 450 MW, which would directly supply into Ghana’s electrical grid for 10 years.

This agreement will be a significan contribution to Ghanaís electrici- ty supply and industry,” it said. The statement said powership project would be a solution to Ghana’s existing power genera- tion problems, while providing valuable foreign direct investment and local employment.

“The powership will generate high voltage electrical energy at one of the lowest prices for ther- mal power generation. The two powerships will initially use the economic and abundant Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) to generate elec- tricity but will have the ability to convert to Natural Gas,” it said.

The statement said the opera- tion of the powership is estimated to deliver savings to Ghana in the range of 120 million dollars annu- ally, as well as creating jobs for the country.

Karpowership has invested more than $30million in mobil- isation, site preparation, marine infrastructure, fuel supply, storage arrangements and grid intercon- nection. Meanwhile, Ghana’s power sec- tor risks an imminent shutdown, if Ghana Gas fails to renew a $2.5 million operational insurance by next week.

A Member of Parliament’s Ener- gy Committee, William Owureku Aidoo, told Joy News, managers of the gas processing facility have informed the Chief of Staff about the possible shutdown of the plant but action is yet to be taken.

“They [Ghana Gas] have also written, incidentally, to the Chief of Staff that come end of this month, 31st of December, their insurance policy expires and with- out the insurance policy in force, the whole Atuabo processing plant would have to shut down. They cannot operate without an insurance cover for the processing plant,” the MP explained.

The state-owned Ghana Gas Company is in the current predic- ament because lean gas supplies to the Volta River Authority (VRA) to generate some 220MW of pow- er have not been paid for.

Ghana Gas sources say out of over $190 million debt owed to Ghana Gas by VRA, just a little over $3 million has been paid by the power producer.

Recently installed AMERI pow- er plant could also be affected since the Atuabo gas processing plant provides a cheaper alterna- tive to importing gas from over- seas.

If Ghana Gas shuts down, then the country’s next alternative for gas to produce power would be the West Africa Gas Processing Company (WAPCo). However due to Ghana’s debt experience with WAPCo, this is not certain.

News Desk Report

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