Energy Sector Profile in Rwanda

Energy sector in Rwanda has greatly improved over the recent past but there is still plenty of room for further improvement. The aim of the sector is to create conditions for the provision of safe, reliable, efficient, cost effective and environmentally appropriate energy services to households and to all economic sectors on a sustainable basis. The energy has current electrification rate of 14.5% with 252,000 connections. Electricity accounts for about 4.5% of primary energy use in Rwanda, biomass contributes 84.5% and petroleum products 11%.

Rwanda has abundant unexploited energy sources including renewable and non-renewable energy sources

Renewable

  • Hydro
  • Peat
  • Wind
  • Solar
  • Geothermal
  • Methane

 Non –renewal

  • Bio fuel
  • Fuel wood

Characteristics of Energy Sector

  • Untapped resources for hydro power generation of 1,200MW, Methane of 700MW and Geothermal of 320 MW.
  • Electricity accounts for only about 4% of primary energy use in Rwanda
  • Biomass contributes for 86% and petroleum products account for about 10%
  • The country currently has about 96 MW of installed capacity
  • Approximately 13% of households are connected to the grid.
  • Current electrification rate for Rwanda is 175,000 connections.
  • Households account for 91% of the net energy consumption, transport 4.5%, industry 2.7% and service 1.8%.
  • About 22% of primary energy is lost in diesel power generation, electricity transmission and distribution losses, and charcoal making.

Current situation in the sector
Rwanda’s energy sector is currently dominated by biomass, diesel and hydro with renewable sources expected to gain more prominence by 2017. Exploration and extraction of energy from methane gas and peat are ongoing. These are areas open to investors.

Rwanda currently produces 96MW of electricity with a customer base of 175,000 customers. This represents a 13% connectivity rate to the grid. The increase in electricity production is expected to come from increase in installed capacity of methane gas, geothermal, energy, regional hydro and peat.

Energy supply and demand
Approximately 86% of primary energy in Rwanda comes from biomass, in the form of fire wood 57%) and charcoal (23%) together with smaller amounts of crop residues and peat (6%). Of the 14% of non-biomass primary energy, petroleum products account for 10% used mainly in the transport sector and electricity for approximately 4%.

The National demand of Electricity is currently300 MW

Investment opportunities

  • Opportunities exist to invest in the methane gas projects located in Lake Kivu
  • A 100 MW plant to be jointly developed by Rwanda and DRC with opportunities for investors
  • An opportunity to establish a methane gas to liquids and gas to fertilizer plant(s)
  • The for potential geothermal energy generation is over 700 MW
  • 10MW well head generation units are expected to be operational in 2014, if the exploratory wells are productive
  • Government of Rwanda plans to develop 300 MW (4 x 75 MW) of geothermal power by 2017

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