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Nuclear energy: Ghana’s best bet for industrialisation- Energy Expert


  18 Août      14        Energie (331), Science (487),

   

Cape Coast, Aug 17, GNA – A renewable energy expert, Mr Flavio Odoi-Yorke, has backed Ghana’s decision to go nuclear, saying it was the country’s best bet for industrialisation.

Mr Odoi-Yorke, a lecturer with the Renewable Energy Technology Department of the Cape Coast Technical University, noted that with an efficiency level between 33 to 37 per cent, nuclear was one of the most efficient technologies used by many industrialised countries across the world.

“Nuclear is more efficient because you can generate a lot of heat from just one uranium. It is more powerful than solar. Even though hydro is also good, it depends on water and, therefore, not too reliable. So, for us to industrialise, nuclear is the best,” he said.

Mr Odoi-Yorke was reacting to Ghana’s nuclear agenda in an interview with the Ghana News Agency on the country’s move for a nuclear power plant which is projected to be completed by 2030.

The plant is expected to add at least 1,000 megawatts to the country’s grid when completed to power its industries and other sectors.

The agenda is already in motion and the country is striving to achieve the second of three milestones instituted to ensure safety and check misuse of the technology for chemical weapons.

Mr Odoi-Yorke said despite the qualities, renewable energy was not strong or reliable enough to be used to power any industry in Ghana.

“Even right now, the sun is unable to shine and it will affect radiation and is likely to affect the wind speed too. So, if you had a wind turbine here, your generation will be very poor,” he added.

Instead, he said renewable energy sources such as solar could only be used to complement the energy consumed from the national grid.

“But for a factory in Tema which consumes a very large amount of power, you need either a nuclear, coal power plant or a strong thermal power plant,” he emphasised.

The renewable energy technology lecturer also observed that nuclear burnt very clean and did not emit greenhouse gases.

“And that is what the world is looking at; trying to cut down on greenhouse gases because of climate change and its repercussion on our existence,” he added.

He, however, observed that uranium which was the main ingredient of the nuclear technology was depletable and therefore, cautioned the country to take measures against future shortage.

He was also concerned about how the waste produced by the plant would be managed and quizzed if the country had enough experts to man the facility.

“We don’t have to complete such a project and hand it over for expatriates to handle it. We need to train more experts, committed enough operate the facility.

“It is a good initiative and must be backed by action till it materialises,” he stated.

Mr Odoi-Yorke further called for an intense media education and sensitisation of the public about the nuclear power plant to allay their fears and get their buy-in.

Prince Acquah

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