Dr Kelvin Kemm, a South African nuclear physicist, deleivers a cogent argument for nuclear energy in Africa, in his presentation below, “A Reliable Electricty Supply.,” (Provided by PD Lawton, creator of the blog: africanagenda.net)
Africa Needs Electrcity
There is no more urgent task for the nations of Africa than expanding the construction of energy plants to generate a massive increase in electricity for distribution by their national electrical grids.
W. Gyude Moore, who formerly served as Liberia’s Minister for Public Works, recently wrote:
The International Energy Agency now estimates that Asia is set to use 50% of global electricity by 2025. China, with its 1.4 billion people, who account for a majority of that. Although Africa has a comparable population to China, its 54 countries will use just 3% of global electricity. That disparity is an eloquent and concise a treatise on Africa’s poverty as there can be…By 2030 the continent is set to host 84% of the world’s extreme poor. Without access to cheap and reliable electricity as well as expensive road [and railroad] systems, Africa’s terms of trade will not improve, and its poverty will remain entrenched.
The devastating impact on the absence of electricity for African nations was also dramatically highlighted by the well-known African philanthropist, Mo Ibrahim. In a February 9th interview on Straight Talk, he explained without exaggeration, the consequential stark reality of the deficit of electricity for African nations. He said:
600 million African people are without access to electricity. Without access to electricity, you don’t have access to life. You don’t have education. You don’t have health. You don’t have businesses. You have nothing!
Gyude Moore and Mo Ibrahim, understand, as every rational human being should; without electricity, economies and nations can’t function. I will go further: people are dying in African nations today due to the catastrophic deficit in electrical generation. There is no more vital issue to be addressed by African leaders and friends of Africa around the world, than reversing the dire shortage of electrical power throughout African continent.
African Solutions For African Problems
Perhaps surprising to many Africans and Westerners alike, nuclear energy is another example of the potential of African nations to provide solutions for African problems.
Dr. Kemm points out that South Africa was a leader in pioneering the development of a Small Nuclear Reactor-SMR. South Africa designed the Pebble Bed Modular Reactor-PBMR mnany years ago, a SMR that could have been utilized throughout Africa to deliver desperately needed energy, if the program had continued.
Quoting Dr. Kemm:
So, in 1993 a decision was made to start investigating the potential in developing a Small Modular Reactor (SMR) to be placed in South African areas in which there were no major supplies of water. South Africa has minimal spare inland water.
So South Africa became the first country in the world to start designing a commercial SMR. The project grew to a significant size, with a total workforce of some 2,000 people, and by 2008 the reactor was ready to be built. The pressure vessel was ordered, and it arrived in South Africa…
African countries and others around the world became interested in nuclear power as they realised the importance of solutions which really work for African conditions, or for the local conditions of diverse countries. A few African leaders have made powerful public statements about their intention to take their countries down a nuclear path. That is totally reasonable, by using Small Modular Reactors which do not need large scale water cooling.
African countries can also easily form a collaborative ‘club’ to link to each other with daily operations, training, and regulatory oversight, amongst other functions. Such an approach will lower costs further and also induce a spirit of cooperation which will be beneficial to all.
Investors need to have the confidence in an advanced energy solution development coming from Africa. Some established mindsets need to change. The SMR from South Africa is an investment opportunity waiting for people with vision, and some courage, and who also have some self-confidence, and a belief in abundant and reliable green power for the future.
To elimiate hunger in Africa. To industrialize African economies. To lift hundreds of millions of Africans out of poverty. Africa must have nuclear energy as its power source.
Read my earlier posts below:
Lawrence Freeman is a Political-Economic Analyst for Africa, who has been involved in economic development policies for Africa for over 30 years. He is a teacher, writer, public speaker, and consultant on Africa. He is also the creator of the blog: lawrencefreemanafricaandtheworld.com. Mr. Freeman’s stated personal mission is; to eliminate poverty and hunger in Africa by applying the scientific economic principles of Alexander Hamilton