Updated project status

The GET FiT project portfolio has grown during 2015. While two biomass and one hydro power projects unfortunately have dropped out, new hydropower projects have been brought on board. Although dominated by hydro, the portfolio still comprises one biomass and two solar PV projects. The portfolio also remains diverse in terms of geography, now featuring 17 projects across 5 of the 10 Ugandan sub-regions. This section provides a brief status for each project.

 

26521-figure-7.png
Figure 8: Geographic distribution of projects in the GET FiT portfolio

 

 

Nyamwamba. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 9.2 MW and estimated 39 GWh annual production, located in Kasese district. Investment of USD 26.8M with USD 5.8M in GET FiT commitments. The project started construction in Q4 2015, and the expected commercial operation date is Q4 2017. While construction start was planned for June 2014, the project experienced significant delays due to flooding which damaged critical access infrastructure (road and bridge) and required redesign of the scheme. Nyamwamba will require a 17 km dedicated medium voltage line for interconnection to the national grid which REA is committed to construct. The project still has outstanding environmental and social issues.


Rwimi. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 5.5 MW and estimated 27 GWh annual production, located in Kasese district. Investment of USD 20.8M with USD 3.9M in GET FiT commitments. Expected commercial operation date is Q2 2017. The project reached financial close and has initiated early construction works, with official groundbreaking in September 2015. The project is actively trying to clear some remaining environmental and social issues.


Kakira Cogeneration. 20 MW biomass (bagasse from sugar production) plant in Jinja District, Eastern Uganda. The plant is expected to deliver up to 147 GWh/year to the grid. Total investment is USD 60.7M with about USD 7.1M in GET FIT commitments. Kakira Sugar Ltd. signed the GET FiT financing agreement in April 2015, and reached official COD when the PPA was signed in mid-2015. Consequently, Kakira Sugar Ltd. became the first recipient of GET FiT premium payment in September. 


Muvumbe. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 6.5 MW and 31 GWh annual production. The project located is in Kabale district. Investment of USD 14.1M with USD 4.5M in GFPPM commitments. Throughout early 2015, the developer Vidullanka struggled with the condition precedent compliance process. However, the project has now signed a financing agreement with GET FiT and the developer commenced construction works in September 2015. Expected COD is Q2 2017. The PPA and IA for the plant have been signed and project financing has reportedly been secured.
 

Lubilia. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 5.4 MW and expected 25 GWh annual production, located in Kasese district. Investment of USD 18.7M with USD 3.2M in GET FiT commitments. The developer has signed all agreements and finalized negotiations with the EPC contractor. While some minor issues remain to be addressed, the project is expected to reach financial close and commence construction within the first half of 2016 after clearing the final environmental and social CPs. Expected commercial operation date is Q4 2017. In terms of interconnection, Lubilia is ideally placed only 3.2 km from the existing grid, and grid interconnection is not likely to represent any challenges.


Waki. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 4.8 MW and estimated 25 GWh annual production located in Hoima and Bulisa District, Western Uganda. Investment of USD 18.1M with USD 3.6M in GET FiT commitments. All agreements for the project have been signed and the developer launched early construction activities in May 2015. The project struggled to clear environmental and social CPs and the early construction phase has seen environmental issues that require further follow up. 


Siti I. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 6.1 MW and estimated 29 GWh annual production located in Bukwo District, Eastern Uganda. Investment of USD 14.8M with USD 3.6M in GET FiT commitments. Construction was commenced in March 2015. Siti I is the most advanced hydropower project in the GET FiT portfolio, and expected commercial operation date is Q4 2016. The developer has faced environmental and social challenges, in particular concerning displacement/ compensation and the Mount Elgon National Park. Notably, the developer has made considerable efforts to overcome these challenges. 


Siti II. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 16 MW and estimated 72 GWh annual production located in Bukwo District, Eastern Uganda. Investment of USD 33M with USD 10.2M in GET FiT commitments. Both DFA and PPA has been signed and all required legal documentation for the project has been executed. However, expected commercial operation date is uncertain, as construction will need to be aligned with the progress of the Mbale–Bulambuli transmission project, which is required for the power evacuation. An interim medium voltage solution to be constructed by REA has been proposed to ensure timely interconnection of the power plant (see section 2.5 for details).


Kikigati. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 16 MW and 115 GWh annual production located in Isingiro district, Southern Uganda on the border to Tanzania. Investment of USD 51.1M with USD 12.3M in GFPPM commitments. After two years standstill, the Governments of Tanzania and Uganda signed the bilateral agreement for implementation of the project in July 2015. This enabled the new owner, Berkeley Energy, to resume preparatory work. Both the SC and IC have emphasized the importance of quick advancement of the project after the signing of the agreement, which GET FiT will aim to safeguard through imposition of strict deadlines for project advancement and CP compliance.  A strict timeline with milestones has been imposed to get the project back on track, with construction start in within first half of 2016 and COD in first half of 2018.


Sindila. Run-of-river hydropower plant with a planned installed capacity of 5 MW and 27 GWh expected annual production located in Bundibugyo district. Investment of USD 17M with USD 3.3M in GET FiT commitments. Sindila was the last project to be selected from the second RFP round, after a re-appraisal of the project was conducted in October 2014. The developer signed the DFA with GET FiT in August 2015. Expected commercial operation date is in Q4 2017, with construction start expected in Q1 2016. Reinforcement of the 87 km long 33 kV line from Bundibugyo to Fort Portal will be required to ensure viable power evacuation from the power plant. This reinforcement is an item under the GET FiT interconnection support component, which will also benefit the recently GET FiT approved and neighboring project Ndugutu HPP. Funding for this reinforcement has been secured from development partners.

 

77655-javier.png
Javier Olaguibel, Acumen Fellow for KMRI LLC
KMRI LLC, the developer of Sindila SHP, was recently awarded a fellow from the Acumen Fund, a US-based non-profit organization.

This fellow will be based in the Bundibugyo District of Uganda and fully dedicated to the creation of a comprehensive infrastructure access program that will be implemented alongside the hydropower project. 

This program will entail the creation of a business model, funded by impact investors, to provide services such as lighting, cell phone charging, clean drinking water, medicine storage and information access points. Once implemented, this program will provide these services at a fraction of the cost to the local community while also enabling a low positive return on investment to the impact funds. After this proof of concept is proven in Bundibugyo, KMRI intends to scale this program throughout the rest of its portfolio in Uganda.

 


Soroti I & II. Ground mounted solar PV power plants, located in Soroti district , with a planned peak capacity of 10 MWp (5MWp each) and average annual energy production of 17.6 GWh. Investment USD 27M with USD 9.5M in GET FiT Commitments. The developer has signed all agreements, and financial close was obtained in early 2016. Construction start is planned for beginning of February 2016 with commissioning in Q4. Funding has been secured from development partners to upgrade the Opuyo substation, through which this and other pipeline solar projects in the Soroti area will interconnect to the grid.


Tororo South & North. Ground mounted solar PV power plants, located in Tororo district, with a planned peak capacity of 10 MWp (5 MWp each) and average annual energy production of 16.7 GWh combined. Investment USD 32M with USD 8.6M in GET FiT Commitments. If all permits and licenses as well as PPA and IA can be concluded within Q1 of 2016, financial close and construction start is expected in Q3, with commissioning during second half of 2016. DFA is in final stages of negotiation. However, unclarified regulatory issues concerning taxation are delaying progress.


Nyamagasani I. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 15 MW and 64 GWh in annual production. The project is located in the Kasese district. Investment of USD 36.7M with USD 9.4M in GFPPM commitments. Approved for GET FiT support in June 2015. 


Nyamagasani II. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 5 MW and 25.5 GWh in annual production. The project is located in the Kasese district. Investment of USD 19.8M with USD 3.7M in GFPPM commitments. Approved for GET FiT support in June 2015. 


Ndugutu. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 4.8 MW and 22 GWh in annual production. The project is located in the Bundibugyo district. Investment of USD 15M with USD 3.2M in GFPPM commitments. Approved for GET FiT support in June 2015.


Kyambura. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 7.6 MW and 36.7 GWh in annual production. The project is located in the Rubirizi district. Investment of USD 24M with USD 5.4M in GFPPM commitments. Approved for GET FiT support in late 2015.


Nkusi. Run-of-river HPP with a planned installed capacity of 9.6 MW and 50.8 GWh in annual production. The project is located in the Kibaale district. Investment of USD 23M with USD 6.5M in GFPPM commitments. Approved for GET FiT support in late 2015.

 

Dropped projects

PH Industrial Farm’s. The SC decided to withdraw support for the 1 MW biomass (gasified maize farm waste) plant in Gulu in 2015. The decision was based on information from the project developer that the project would be severely delayed due to fuel supply insecurity. The funds allocated to PH Industrial Farm were reallocated to the RfP3 projects.

SAIL Cogen. The GET FiT Steering Committee decided to withdraw support for the 6.9 MW biomass (bagasse from sugar production) plant in Kaliro district in 2015, and reallocate it to RfP3 projects. Despite additional funding provided through the KfW-funded project preparation facility administered by UECCC, the project was unfortunately not able to reach timely compliance with IFC Performance Standards on environmental and social issues. This was confirmed through a supervision visit in June 2015. 

Nengo Bridge.  The Nengo Bridge Hydropower Project unfortunately did not reach financial close within the November 21st, 2015 deadline stipulated in the Developer Financing Agreement. The risk of the project not being able to reach COD before the end of 2018 GET FiT window was eventually considered too high. It was therefore decided to terminate the Developer Financing Agreement and reallocate funding to other projects on the reserve list.