Powerful Partnerships: Bringing Electricity to Liberia
In 2014, partnering with NRECA International through a cooperative agreement, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) initiated a multi-year program to support Liberia’s Rural and Renewable Energy Agency (RREA). This program is focused on building RREA’s technical and management capacity with the oversight of a $178 million investment portfolio of off-grid projects that will set the stage to electrify rural Liberia. The USAID Beyond the Grid Project (BTG) also is responsible for completing four off-grid projects that demonstrate how renewable energy technology can play a role in providing rural electric service.
Inaugurated in 2015 the Gbarnway Community Solar Electricity Pilot Project generates 24 kilowatts of renewable off-grid electricity from stand-alone solar photovoltaic systems for the whole community. Today, this project provides power to 153 households, five streetlights, and five public facilities, including the community school and clinic. The USAID/NRECA International team continues to work closely with the Gbarnway Woeyah Electric Cooperative and the community to ensure this power resource can last generations.
In 2016, the USAID/NRECA International team commissioned the Kwendin Biomass Project which produces electricity from a biomass gasification system using rubber tree wood chips. Today, the Kwendin Lorkiah Electric Cooperative serves 250 customers.
Under development is a power system in Sorlumba. The USAID/NRECA International team continues to work with this rural community to establish a new service provider using clean energy. Upon completion, a power generation system in Sorlumba will produce 36 kilowatts to serve about 206 customers using crude palm oil.
The Mein River Hydropower Project will provide 24-hour electric service to a group of communities in Suakoko District of Bong County, serving over 2,500 households and small businesses and will provide prime power service to Cuttington University, Phebe Hospital and the Central Agricultural Research Institute. The power system will consist of a 1 MW run-of-river hydroelectric plant located on the Mein River. When complete, the Mein River Power Company will be owned and operated by the Kpakpormein Electric Cooperative, Phebe Hospital and the Cuttington University.
In addition, NRECA International is involved in the Program for Gender and Social Inclusion in the Energy Sector (GSIE), with support from our partner Energia. In Liberia, the GSIE program is designing a new project to increase opportunities for women entrepreneurs to grow their businesses through access to electric service and increased presence in the market for electric products.
- United States Agency for International Development
- Liberia Rural and Renewable Energy Agency