Ghana must not abandon the exploitation of fossil fuel (crude oil) resources as it moves to cleaner energy sources as part of its Energy Transition Plan (ETP), the Co-Chair of the Ghana Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (GHEITI), has said.
The country has currently completed an ETP, which is to be presented to the Cabinet for perusal and approval.
It outlines measures and strategies to help the country gradually move from fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy such as solar, wind and gas as part of efforts to combat climate change.
DrManteaw, who disclosed this in an interview with the Ghanaian Times on the sidelines of the launch of a report on Ghana’s Critical Minerals and Energy Transition in Accra on Tuesday, said “the world had gone through major transitions from wood, coal, oil and now moving to renewables” and fossil fuel had not been abandoned.
“At every stage of the world’s three or four transitions, there has always been remnants of the previous dominant fuel in the current energy landscape,” he said.
Commissioned by the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), GHEITI and funded by the USAID the study seeks to explore how minerals such as lithium, bauxite and manganese can help the country to move from fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy as part of its energy transition agenda.
On the topic “The Energy Transition and Critical Minerals in Ghana: Diversification Opportunities and Governance Challenges,” the report seeks to assist policymakers and stakeholders in understanding the risks and opportunities associated with the energy transition.
Dr Manteaw indicated that it was encouraging the country was making a transition not to abandon fossil fuel entirely but then renewable energy was expected to be the dominant fuel.
“The other fuel sources such as oil will support the country’s energy mix and then going forward, my position is that Ghana should continue invest in in oil, gas,” he said.
Dr Manteaw said the European Union had classified gas a cleaner source of fuel, and as result, the country should intensify its use and generate a lot of revenue now to finance the country’s transition to renewables.
He said Ghana’s energy transition target of 2070 was achievable and even if it was pushed to 2030 that could be attained.
That, the Co-Chair of GHEITI, was because, already Ghana had in terms of power generation, almost transitioned.
Ghana, Dr Manteaw said was currently doing 33 per cent hydro power generation and 66 per cent thermal, saying “Even with the 66 per cent thermal power generation was predominately gas.”
“And so if you put the gas, which is considered as a cleaner source of energy, and then you take the hydro, Ghana can be said to have transitioned in terms of power generation,” he said.
Dr Manteaw, however, said the country’s biggest challenge remained the transport sector, which predominantly relied on used cars imported into the country,and used combustion engines.
The Co-Chair of GHEITI suggested that government should bring in a lot electric buses to reduce the reliance of cars which used fuels such as petrol and diesel.
BY KINGSLEY ASARE