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Embrace solar thermal technologies: Gumbo

Joram Gumbo

By Miriam Zvomuya

The Minister of Energy and Power Development Hon Minister Dr. Joram Gumbo is calling on households and industries to use solar thermal energy for heating to assist in saving and reducing the current power import bill.

This emerged at a launch of the Solar Thermal Technology Roadmap and Implementation Plan for Zimbabwe held in Harare.

Energy plays a pivotal role in social and economic development. The Solar Thermal Energy will help the Government to achieve its 2030 vision of middle-income economy as well as saving electricity, which can be channeled to other productive sectors of the economy.

As the country pushes towards the cleaner sources of energy there is need to decarbonise the energy supply by adopting renewable sources of energy, said Dr Gumbo.

“My Ministry is considering formulating a legislative framework that outlaws the use of electric geysers in households and other institutional buildings. This may help the Ministry to achieve its intended target of installing at least 250 000 solar geysers by 2030 as indicated in the draft Renewable Energy Policy.”

He added that in order for the solar thermal technology roadmap to be successful, there is need for collaborative effort between the government of Zimbabwe, Industry, educational and finance Institutions.

Those in the agriculture sector can use solar dryers to preserve crop yields. This helps to increase the food’s shelf life whilst retaining the relevant nutrients .The Hotel industry may also enjoy the services of solar water heating and solar space heating. Solar Water heater technologies can be used in a number of applications including preheating of water in industries.

“Surely the choice is yours. Either to continue paying huge electricity bills at the same time polluting the environment or adopt solar water heaters to reduce operational costs and save the environment,” added Honourable Minister Dr Gumbo.

The Solar Thermal technology is a result of collaborative efforts between the government of Zimbabwe, SOLTRAIN and other stakeholders to promote use of solar heating and cooling in the country.

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Byron Adonis Mutingwende