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Mauritius: African Development Bank power station renovation improves energy production, air quality
The refurbishment of the old Saint Louis power station has brought a breath of fresh air to those working at and living in the north west of Mauritius. Renovation of the machinery has addressed the electricity supply shortages, thanks to financial assistance from the African Development Bank.
For years, the power station, the country’s main electricity production plant, located in the southern periphery of Camp Chapelon, flooded the town’s 1,500 inhabitants and 2,000 workers with noisy and gaseous emissions, leading to discomfort and ill health.
Thanks to the renovation which included optimised stack height and new engines, the air quality has hugely improved. A noise wall was also built adjacent to the plant to reduce the noise, and the plant now generates a reliable power supply with far fewer emissions from the generating sets and its auxiliaries.
At least 36% of the population (479,111 people) in Mauritius have benefited from the African Development Bank’s $116.7 million loan in 2015 to the Central Electricity Board (CEB), the state-owned electricity utility.
The redevelopment of Saint Louis Power Station has helped to increase the country’s existing energy reserve by 42 MW and fill the gap caused by growing demand. Mauritius has increased its installed capacity from 634 MW in 2013, to 847.44 MW at the end of 2018. Its industries, microenterprises, and businesses have stopped suffering from unreliable power supply, thereby galvanising economic activities and contributing to the country’s economic growth.
Josephine Ngure, the Bank’s Deputy Director General of the Southern Africa Region and Mauritius Country Manager, said, “The Bank is pleased to have partnered with the Government of Mauritius in funding and implementing this transformative project, which was implemented on time and within budget. The project will contribute to ensuring that the people of Mauritius have access to a reliable source of electricity in an environmentally sustainable way”.
The Bank’s support to Mauritius has enable it to provide reliable energy, while improving the environment and reducing greenhouse gasses emission, thus putting Mauritius on the road to becoming a high-income country by 2025.
The Bank will continue to work closely with the Government to meet its national development plan through various ongoing projects. The project aligns with the Bank’s High 5 strategies, especially “Light Up and Power Africa” and “Improve the Quality of Life for the people of Africa”.