International Consultant to Undertake Feasibility Study for the Setting Up of a Floating Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Farm in Lakes and Reservoirs in Mauritius
GCF ‘Accelerating the Transformational Shift to A Low-Carbon Economy in the Republic of Mauritius’ project
With 84% of its primary energy requirements met from imported fossil fuels, Mauritius, like many Small Island Developing States (SIDS), is extremely vulnerable to energy shocks. The grid emission factor of Mauritius is extremely high at 1.01 tonnes CO2eq/MWh due to the prevalence of imported coal (39%) and fuel oil (38%) in the electricity generation mix. Net greenhouse gas emissions are increasing at a rapid rate of 3% per year. The pressing need to significantly enhance Mauritius’s energy independence and reduce greenhouse gas emissions is recognised in the country’s Nationally Determined Contribution (2016), its Second National Communication to the UNFCCC (2010) and its UNFCCC Technology Needs Assessment (2014), as well as in a comprehensive suite of Government strategies and policies contained in the Long-Term Energy Strategy (2011-2025).
Following a broad consultative process led by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development which is the National Designated Authority (NDA), the UNDP and backed by sound technical and financial analysis as well as considerable political will, Mauritius secured a grant from the Green Climate Fund to implement the “Accelerating the transformational shift to a low carbon economy” project which will remove the principal bottlenecks to investment in low-carbon development for: (i) grid-connected intermittent renewable energy; and (ii) mini-grid PV for the principal outer island, Agalega. The project will be implemented in a two-phase approach so as to reduce the implementation risks to the GCF and ensure that the second funding disbursement is contingent upon successful completion of the first phase.
Under component 1 of this project, the Ministry of Energy and Public Utilities (MEPU) will, with the assistance of the GCF, receive the necessary assistance to develop a fit-for-purpose legal and regulatory framework to allow the ambitious scale-up of renewable energy in Mauritius to increase the share of renewable energy (RE) generated from the actual value of 20% to 35% by 2025. GCF funding will also be used to develop a staffing plan/structure for MARENA that is aligned with the needs of the Long-Term Energy Strategy; to develop a secondment strategy that will allow experienced CEB and MEPU staff to work at MARENA for limited periods (e.g. 1-2 years), thereby building capacity quickly. With GCF support, MARENA will be empowered and fully operationalised to assist renewable energy (RE) investors, particularly Independent Power Producers (IPPs), in reducing the transaction costs and time delays currently associated with RE investments. MARENA will also provide technical oversight and policy planning support.
Under the mandate of institutional strengthening for renewable energy, the services of a consultant are required to carry out a feasibility study for the setting up of a Floating Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Farm in Tamarind Falls Reservoir.
Setting-Up of a Floating Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Farm in Tamarind Falls Reservoir
The solar irradiation potential in the Republic of Mauritius is on average 6.0 W/m2/day and is considered as quite good for solar PV projects. More than 60% of Mauritius receives more than this value; the southern central regions receiving less due to the presence of clouds on elevated regions. Of the types of renewable energy, the abundant solar energy is currently readily exploitable, and its corresponding exploitation system fastest to implement. Consideration for floating solar photovoltaic panels has been made taking into consideration the fact that many surface water bodies located in regions having plentiful sunshine and could be converted into power generation plants. The surface area of water surfaces like reservoirs, lakes, and exposed water storage/treatment basins could be used to accommodate a floating solar PV farm and thus adding value to the previously unusable area.
The objectives of this assignment are to:
- Carry out a feasibility study for the setting up of floating solar PV farms in lakes and reservoirs in Mauritius;
- Undertake an in-depth analysis for the setting up of floating solar PV at Tamarind Falls Reservoir.