Significant renewable energy potential presents opportunities for Botswana to enhance energy security and increase access to modern energy services.
This is according to a new report published by the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), which highlights policy and risk mitigation actions needed to facilitate renewables development.
The report, Renewables Readiness Assessment: Botswana, was developed in close co-operation with the Ministry of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security (MMGE). It supports the Botswana National Energy policy, which aims to source 15% of its energy from renewables by 2030.
Around a third of Botswana’s population currently lack access to electricity and the country’s power system is characterised by unreliable power supplies and high service costs.
Botswana meets peak power demand with coal and petroleum imports from South Africa, importing up to 15% of its electricity from neighbouring countries.
“Botswana has a significant endowment of renewable energy resources that if fully developed could stimulate sustainable, economy wide gains that benefit all Batswana,” said IRENA Director-General Francesco La Camera. “We will work closely with the Government of Botswana as it pursues a new energy future, to ensure that the recommendations of this study help inform planning and policymaking in the years ahead.”
The report calls for a clear long-term vision for renewable energy development with binding commitments supported by data from pre-feasibility studies to reduce investment risks and attract private sector participation.
The report also highlights the need for operational accountability and a degree of political independence for the Botswana Energy Regulation Authority (BERA).
Read the full report.