Building Starts on Solar Plant to Power Burkina Faso Gold Mine

OUAGADOUGOU (Capital Markets in Africa) – Construction has begun on a 15-megawatt solar project to help power Iamgold Corp.’s Essakane gold mine in Burkina Faso, developers Eren Renewable Energy SA and Africa Energy Management Platform said Tuesday.

The project, which is expected to cost $20 million, is scheduled for completion in January 2018, according to Christophe Fleurence, Eren’s vice president for business development in Africa. The developers have signed a 15-year power purchase agreement with Toronto-based Iamgold.

Essakane, which is located about 330 kilometres (205 miles) northeast of the West African country’s capital, Ouagadougou, must generate all of its own power because of its isolated location. Fuel accounts for about 30 percent of operating costs, general manager Bruno Lemelin said by phone. The solar plant will be added to an existing 55-megawatt heavy-fuel power plant and is expected to help cut the mine’s fuel consumption by about 6 million liters a year, the companies said.


Leave a Comment