Foundation takes measures to conserve energy, (Thursday, March 11, 2010 pg 32)

THE Energy Foundation and the Ghana Standards Board (GSB) have introduced an Appliance Standards and Labelling Programme to protect the country from becoming a dumping ground for energy-inefficient household appliances.

Under the programme, only appliances meeting a minimum energy efficiency threshold will be allowed into the country.

The Director of Communications and Marketing of the Energy Foundation, Mr Ernest Asare, made this known at a seminar organised by Amanadehyee ( an association of Prempeh College and Yaa Asantewaa Girls’ old students) at their Ninth Annual Inter-tertiary Congress in Accra.

The seminar brought together old students of the two institutions in tertiary institutions across the country to deliberate on issues concerning their welfare, share ideas and create development agenda for their alma mater.

Mr Asare, who was making a presentation on the theme: “Government Policy on Energy Conservation: The Role of the University Student”, said the standard regime was already in place for air conditioners, where the minimum standard was an Energy-Efficient Ratio (EER) rating of 2.8, adding that this would be extended to cover refrigerators, fans and common motors.

He stated that studies had shown that 30 per cent of the energy consumed in the country was wasted, hence the need to pay particular attention to energy consumption in order to reduce waste.

He said the country was spending a lot of funds on the production of energy thermal power to complement cheap hydropower from the Akosombo Dam, which is no longer meeting the national demand for electricity as a result of the low levels of its water following the indiscriminate felling of trees and deforestation.

He noted that the country was also implementing a programme dubbed the Power Factor Improvement Scheme under which companies had been assisted through a government lease programme to acquire capacitors on credit to improve their power factor and avoid financial difficulties.

Mr Asare observed that energy constituted a significant part of the running cost of the hospital industry in the country, particularly in water heating, air-conditioning and laundry services, adding that it created an opportunity that students could play a major role in designing and producing a simpler cost-effective solution using local materials.

On solar energy as a solution to the country’s energy needs, he said local manufacture of solar equipment had been identified as a way of bringing down the cost of solar energy in the country, noting that several studies had already been done in the area.

He urged the students to be ambassadors of energy conservation in their various schools in order to sustain the drive towards an energy efficient economy.

A former Ghana Ambassador to China in the Dr Kwame Nkrumah regime, who is also a pioneer student of the Prempeh College, Mr Kojo Gottfried-Amoo, recounted memories of his days at the school and advised the student to pursue their studies diligently, share in the culture of science as a way of living, thinking and behaving while eschewing social vices like drugs, immorality and laziness.

“Today the fundamental basis for wealth creation and national prosperity is coming increasingly, not from what people can make but from what people can produce from their heads,” Mr Gottfried-Amoo stated.

The President of the Amanadehyee urged his colleagues to remain committed to the tenets of the association not only for their personal development but also for the their alma mater and the nation.

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