Solar power is becoming more popular due to technological advances in the industry. This October these advances will come to the fore when more than 200 delegates from across the world are expected to gather in Windhoek to deliberate on technical, policy and financing issues of solar energy and power.
With topics such as the impact of solar on gender empowerment, health, ICT and education, just to mention a few, attendance by both exhibitors and attendees is expected from several southern African countries, Europe and eastern Africa, thanks in part to the boom in business that the solar industry is experiencing.
“The conference is a relevant platform to discuss issues pertaining to solar. Good examples of this have been the land and education conferences. Solar is often discussed only when energy is discussed and it is often clouded by other energy subjects, despite its great potential to steer the economy and the masses out of poverty,” said conference director David Jarrett.
The conference and exhibition will showcase existing practical solar projects in Namibia and abroad that show the effective utilisation of solar power for national development and service delivery. The relevance of this event primarily lies in its awareness-raising opportunity to demonstrate current achievements of solar projects.
Jarret says key to this conference is the bringing about of a better understanding of what has been achieved to date and what can and cannot be done with solar.
In addition, solar technology core providers will showcase their capabilities to remove misconceptions and enhance the use of solar.
“Solar was barely mentioned in the Energy White Paper (1998), the National Development Plans and in Vision 2030. The arrival of Harambee Prosperity Plan offers us an opportunity to identify what solar can do so that no one is left behind in poverty, now that solar is recognised in the renewable energy policy. There will be presentations on rural transformation with solar, drought management, etcetera,” says Jarrett.
Delegates from China, India, Germany, Rwanda, USA, Kenya, Spain, Portugal, France and South Africa have expressed interest in participating in the conference while organisations like the Namibia Energy Institute, SACU, and the Solar Revolving Fund have confirmed their presence.