Cargill takes steps to modernize renewable energy infrastructure in Ghana
Plant invests in innovative solar energy facility; contributes to sustainability goals
(GHANA) 30 November 2017 – Today marks the inauguration of Cargill’s new solar power facility at its Cocoa & Chocolate site in Tema, Ghana. This energy project contributes to Cargill’s global strategy of investing in environmentally friendly, renewable ways of generating power for industrial production. By investing in renewable energy, Cargill is living up to its responsibility to find ways to continuously decrease the environmental impact of its businesses.
Solar plant to boost renewable energy capacity
The new solar plant, which opened its doors today during an event at the Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate site in Tema, is a fully automated, digital photovoltaic solar system. It augments energy needs at the site and boosts Ghana’s renewable energy portfolio by producing 764MWh of electricity annually. The solar energy produced at the plant is equivalent to powering nearly 400 homes with electricity for a year.
Sustainable business goals
The solar project consolidates Cargill’s continued support towards a sustainable cocoa business in Ghana. Pieter Reichert, managing director of Cargill Cocoa and Chocolate in Ghana, said, “Cargill sets ambitious targets every five years to reduce greenhouse gas intensity, improve energy efficiency and increase renewables as a part of our portfolio. One of those targets is to increase renewables to 18 percent of our global energy portfolio by 2020. Today, 14 percent of our energy needs are met by renewables, and this solar project will help us realize our 2020 goal”.
Continued progress in Tema
The solar facility is just one of the innovative and technological solutions Cargill has implemented at the Tema site to improve its environmental footprint. Other recent projects include the installation of LED lighting, an energy-efficient grinding facility and a biomass boiler. Collectively, all four projects at the Tema sites have resulted in a 32 percent decrease in energy consumption, a 71 percent reduction of CO2 emissions and 66 percent renewable energy generation.
Collaboration with Ghanaian government
Thanks to close collaboration with the Ghanaian authorities, including President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo who commissioned the facility, the plant allows Cargill to support Ghana’s commitment to strengthening industrial production in the cocoa sector through a sustainable and energy-efficient investment. Guest of honor at the inauguration event, Deputy Minister Trade & Industry, Hon. Carlos Kingsley Ahenkorah spoke at the ceremony; “The government is committed to increasing the nation’s renewably energy capacity to help confront the challenges in the power sector and we are hopeful that others in the Ghanaian cocoa industry will follow Cargill’s lead.”
About the installation
The contractor of the project, Dutch & Co.(Gh.) Ltd, a company that specializes in energy efficiency through LED lighting and PV Solar installations, divided the installation capacity over an open field ground mount system of 413KWp and a Car Port system of 152KWp. In total, 2,136 solar panels were used, each with a capacity of 265Wp. To install the ground mount structure, a specialized Pile Driver provided the supporting structure for the panels, a technique most often used often for large-scale solar installations.The installation’s peak power generation period is between 11am and 3pm, during which period 15 percent of Tema’s electricity needs will be supplied by the solar panels.
Wendy Garbutt, +44 1932 861168, [email protected]
Cargill’s 155,000 employees across 70 countries work relentlessly to achieve our purpose of nourishing the world in a safe, responsible and sustainable way. Every day, we connect farmers with markets, customers with ingredients, and people and animals with the food they need to thrive. We combine 155 years of experience with new technologies and insights to serve as a trusted partner for food, agriculture, financial and industrial customers in more than 125 countries. Side-by-side, we are building a stronger, sustainable future for agriculture.
About Cargill in Ghana
Cargill has been buying cocoa from Ghana for over 40 years and in 2008 opened its state-of-the-art cocoa processing facility in Tema. Today the company has over 400 permanent and contracted employees processing cocoa products to service food and confectionary customers locally and around the world. Additionally, our animal nutrition business provides aqua feed which is supporting Ghana’s tilapia fish industry. In 2016 we added a licensed buying company (LBC). Our LBC operations bring innovative ways to trade with our farmers placing emphasis on our sustainability and traceability efforts and build on our long-term commitment to the country and our relationship with the government.