Rwanda Seeks $1 Billion Geothermal Energy Investment
20 February 2012
OilPrice.com - February 20, 2012
Rwanda is astride the East African Rift Valley, one of the world's hottest spots for geothermal activity and experts estimate the geothermal potential of the East African Rift Valley, a geothermal hot-spot that spans 11 African countries, at more than 15,000 megawatts, but the valley’s massive potential has remained largely untapped except for incipient projects underway in Kenya and Ethiopia.
Rwanda’s region with most geothermal potential is the country’s Virunga volcanic zones in the north and hot springs in the western part of the nation.
For the past year officials in the capital Kigali have been elated over the country’s future geothermal energy prospects, with Rwanda’s Energy Ministry noting in a statement issued last March, "Rwanda is targeting 310 megawatts of production in the next seven years at an estimated cost of $935 million. The geothermal sources have been identified between Gisenyi and Karisimbi Volcano and Bugarama. It will cost in total $30.2 million for drilling three exploration wells and doing the site preparation, which will include availing infrastructure on site. Rwanda is also looking at developing hydropower, methane gas, solar, biogas, peat, with an ultimate goal to reach 1,000megawatts of production capacity by 2017".