Africa-shaped solar plant brings new light to Rwanda

Published 5:23 AM ET, Mon December 7, 2015
Rwanda solar 1Rwanda solar 1
1 of 5
Rwanda's new solar plant was in full production only a year after the agreement to construct it was signed. The Africa-shaped solar field has 28,360 photovoltaic panels, and has increased the country's generation capacity by 6%. Courtesy Gigawatt Global
During construction around 350 local workers employed. The plant is built on land owned by Agahozo-Shalom Youth Village, a residential community which cares for children orphaned before and after the 1994 genocide. Gigawatt Global says it plans to train some of the students attending a school on its grounds in skills needed to work in the solar power industry. Courtesy Gigawatt Global
U2 frontman Bono, seen here with Gigawatt Global co-founders Yosef Abramowitz and Chaim Motzen, and US Senator Chris Coons, visited the facility in August. Former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair also toured the plant. Gigawatt Global/PR NEWSWIRE
The $23.7 million project was financed by an international consortium of partners and
supported by Power Africa, U.S. president Barack Obama's initiative to increase access to electricity on the continent.
Courtesy Gigawatt Global
Currently only 18% of Rwanda's population has access to electricity, but the government has ambitions plans to connect 70% of households to the grid by 2017. Courtesy Gigawatt Global