Angolan government plans to replace diesel with natural gas at some power plants

7 July 2014

The Angolan government has a programme underway to replace diesel-fired power plants with gas-fired plants in order to reduce the cost of power production, said the Minister for Energy and Water, João Baptista Borges.

During an energy conference held Thursday in Luanda the minister said that “the average cost of producing electricity is estimated at US$220 per megawatt hour, which is significantly higher than in the rest of the region and another factor affecting sustainability of the electricity sector.”

“We don’t plan to scrap diesel altogether, as we will need those plants to cover short terms needs, such as peak periods, but rather we plan for them to stop operating on a continual basis and, in some cases, also replace the fuel they use with natural gas,” added Borges.

According to the minister, the first units adapted to using natural gas, such as the thermal plants in Cazenga (Luanda) – the most important plant in the country – and Malembo (Cabinda), are expected to be operational “soon”.

An investment of around US$1 billion was confirmed during the conference for electrification of the central and southern regions of Angola. The project will be carried out by an Israeli company and will increase the country’s electrification rate, which currently stands at around 33 percent. (macauhub/AO)