The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of the People’s Republic of China launched a climate change South-South Cooperation (SCC) initiative to help developing countries address the adverse effect of climate change through the provision of energy efficiency and renewable energy goods and equipment. The University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) through the then Ministry of Energy and Petroleum was selected to benefit from the project.
An MOU was signed between the NDRC and the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum. The NDRC agreed to provide the following goods to the Republic of Ghana at the one-time base to enhance its domestic capacity in combating climate change: 500 Solar Street Lights, 1000 Inverter Air-Conditioning Units, and 2000 Solar Home Systems.
Each of the three categories of products (Solar Street Lights, Inverter Air Conditioners, and Solar Home Systems), were consigned from China and have been received in three separate consignments.
The Project Proposal calls for the target groups and final beneficiaries to include government institutions, health posts, schools, and island communities. A committee has been set up by the Vice-Chancellor to oversee the implementation of the project. The Committee in conjunction with the Ministry has been implementing the project.
As stipulated in the MOU, the University has hosted experts from the Chinese company Zhejiang Yankon Group Co. Ltd, Medea, and Shenzhen Spark Optoelectronics to train technicians and staff of the University on the installation of the Solar Street Lights, inverter ACs and Solar Home Systems respectively.
Upon the completion of the training for the installation of all 3 items, the University in turn has trained a minimum of two technicians from the beneficiary institutions.
The University has however trained 30 students and technicians from UMaT, 15 from UDS, Tamale, and 10 from the University of Education, Winneba Campus on the installation of the Solar Street Lights, inverter ACs and Solar Home Systems. Again, more than 300 UENR students have been trained. The project has received students from China, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, the United States of America, and Spain to undertake internship programs where they involved themselves in the installations of solar systems in off-grid communities.