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VRA diversify technology to drive down power generation cost

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In its quest to improve power efficiency and bring down electricity tariffs in the country, the Chief Executive Officer, Emmanuel Antwi-Darkwa of the Volta River Authority, VRA, has stated that his outfit is forcefully pursuing an innovation and digitisation agenda.

According to him, the agenda which is in line with government’s digitization agenda will safeguard the future of the state-owned power producer.

Speaking at an event to mark the 60th anniversary of the company in Accra, Mr. Antwi-Darkwa said digitisation represents the future of the business and that the Authority is positioning itself to take advantage of current technological advancements to stay competitive.

“We recognise that, these enablers will compel us to drive down our costs and therefore remain competitive. We are determined to fully embrace all opportunities that will come our way,” he said at the event which forms part of series of year-long activities marking the company’s 60 years of existence,” he said.

He also noted that the Volta River Authority (VRA) has also began diversifying its energy generating investment portfolio to solar, wind and biomass to remain competitive in the market.

This, he said would facilitate the integration of the variable sources and better monitor and maintain its generation assets for improved, stable and reliable power operations.

Mr. Emmanuel Antwi-Darkwa further stated that plans are far advanced to convert the Akosombo town into a Smart City, by transforming it to become the technology hub of the country.

“We will leverage on the infrastructure and human skill sets that are abundant in the Akosombo area. A roof top solar project at our head office has been completed to serve as a precursor to the establishment of solar parks and rooftop solar facilities in Akosombo, Aboadze and Akuse enclave,” he said.

He said the Authority had embarked on a number of renewable projects to meet the national demand in an environmentally sustainable manner to ensure adequate and competitively-priced electricity to support industrial and social development.

The projects include the 60-megawatts Pwalugu Multipurpose Dam, which has an additional solar component of 50 megawatts.

The Authority is constructing 19.6 megawatts Kaleo/Lawra Solar Plants, while its wind projects at Ada and Anloga are under development.

“We will continue to nurse other potential renewable projects on the Oti River as well as a pipeline of solar projects at Bongo, Walewale and other parts of the country,” Mr Antwi-Darkwa said.

“The Authority commissioned the Kpong Generating Station Retrofit Project in Akuse, aimed at extending the life of the electro-mechanical infrastructure of the power plant. We are confident that the Kpong station can now reliably deliver 30 more years of clean energy.”

He said the overall aim of the Authority was to develop VRA into a public institution, which operated with a private sector interest, stressing that its resolve was to be on a sound operational and financial footing through prudent management practices.

On his part, Mr. Kwame Agyeman-Budu, the Managing Director of Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), commended VRA for being the leader in the power industry and pledged the ECG’s support for the growth of the Authority.

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