The Director of the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research of the University of Ghana, ISSER, Prof. Felix Asante has called on the Ghana Government to go beyond rhetoric to show the political will to invest in renewable energy sources.
He was speaking at a side event organized by the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research, ISSER, in collaboration with
Hatof Foundation, an environmental NGO, at the Climate Change Conference COP 22 in Marrakech, Morocco.
Prof Asante addressing delegates
Speaking on the theme: Accelerating investments in renewable energy in Ghana: challenges and success stories, Prof. Asante enumerated the high renewable energy potentials of Ghana.
These include biomass, solar, hydro and high wind power. On hydro alone he mentioned that Ghana had over 14 potential hydro sites with a capacity of 740MW yet to be explored.
On his part, Dr. Simon Bawakyillenuo a Research Fellow at ISSER spoke on the topic: Political economy analysis of the binding constraints to renewable energy investment in Ghana.
He disclosed that from his research there are three binding constraints to renewable energy investment in Ghana. They include of-taker risk, faulty power sector regulation and a lack of access to appropriate finance.
Prof Asante (left), Dr. Osafo (middle) and Dr. Bawakyillenuo (right) at the conference
Dr. Bawakyillenuo espoused a three-pronged approach to put renewables in the front burner. These, he pointed, were government eliminating subventions and interference from the sector, promoting and implementing findings of local research that unearth better ways to implement subsidiary instruments and strengthening fiscal and monetary instruments in the country to reduce policy rates given to domestic banks. The resultant reduction could curb high interest charges on credit facilities which investors would find more accommodating.
The Chief Executive Officer of Hatof Foundation, an environmental NGO, spoke on the topic: Innovative community investments.
In his presentation, he recounted investments made by Hatof Foundation in enhancing traditional cooking stoves in Ghanaian Secondary Schools with support from the UNDP small grants program. This became necessary because most of the schools in Ghana could not meet the World Health Organisation’s indoor air quality guidelines for fine particulate matter in their kitchens.
The side event was chaired by Dr. Seth Osafo a former secretary of the conference of the parties at the Climate Change Secretariat, United Nations.