Ghana’s Nuclear Power Project estimated to generate $1.2 billion for local industries – GAEC Boss

The Director-General of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), Prof. Benjamin Jabez Botwe Nyarko, has said that Ghana’s Nuclear Power Programme (NPP) is estimated to generate US$1.2 billion through local industry participation during its implementation.

Speaking at the 4th edition of the Ghana Industrial Summit and Exhibition in Accra, the Director-General said the US$1.2 billion is a projection based on a 1000MW nuclear power plant construction which is exclusive of the benefits that will be accrued when the nuclear power plant becomes operational.

Prof. Nyarko who is also the Vice-Chairman of the Ghana Nuclear Power Programme Organization (GNPPO) and the Board Chair of the Nuclear Power Ghana (NPG), explained, that industrial involvement is one of the 19 infrastructure issues of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) recommended milestone approach to develop a nuclear power programme. He added that a newcomer country is expected to generate at least 20 percent local content and local participation in the nuclear power project.

Director-General of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), Prof. Benjamin Jabez Botwe Nyarko (Standing), delivering a speech at the Summit.

In leading participants to appreciate the financial benefits to the local industry, Prof. Nyarko explained that if one considers a US$6 billion nuclear power project, 20 percent is very significant and would be a huge boost to the local industry.

“In the IAEA approach of a newcomer country undertaking nuclear power programme, there are 19 infrastructure issues, and one of the infrastructure issues is industrial involvement. “And so, if we are talking about an industry that is going to cost about $6 billion, you can estimate how much benefits Ghanaian local industries will derive from the programme,” he said.

He cautioned, however, that the country’s ability to fully participate would depend on the capacity of the local industry. He, therefore, called for the deepening of the partnership between the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) and the Ghana Nuclear Power Programme Organization (GNPPO) to prevent the reliance on foreign companies for goods and services to the nuclear power project.

“Once Ghana is on the path of adding nuclear power to its energy generation mix, it is essential that the capacity of Ghanaian owned industries is built so that they do not lose out,” he added. When it comes to nuclear, some standards and specifications must be met, and so, local industries must be well equipped to benefit from the implementation of the nuclear power project,” he said.

By CPRC/CCD

Electricity from Ghana’s Nuclear Power Programme to cost 5 to 8 cents per kWh

A pre-feasibility study on electricity generation from Ghana’s Nuclear Power Programme (NPP) is estimated to cost 5 to 8 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh).

The Director of Nuclear Power Institute (NPI) of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, Dr. Seth Kofi Debrah, announced this at the 4th edition of the Ghana Industrial Summit and Exhibition in Accra, last Thursday, where he delivered a presentation on behalf of the Nuclear Power Ghana (NPG).

He explained that nuclear power is an economic electricity-generation source because of its low levelized cost, low operating cost, and most significantly, relatively stable fuel regime.

Dr. Debrah explained further that nuclear power holds the key to reducing the overall electricity tariff in the country and ensuring a reliable power supply, which would give Ghanaian businesses the impetus to be very competitive. “Other countries spend less than 20 percent on electricity to produce goods and services whereas Ghanaian industries spend close to 40 percent of production cost on electricity. This makes Ghanaian goods and services relatively expensive,” he lamented.

He indicated that other countries have used nuclear technology to push their industrialisation agenda and have developed. He insisted that the time has come to focus on and chart the path of nuclear power as it has a lot of potentials and a competitive edge.

“We have some energy generation potentials in the areas of solar, wind, and a number of hydro potential sites, with a single maximum site capacity of about 100MW. There are others we have to look at, and that is, nuclear. Other countries have used this nuclear technology to develop, push their industrialization agenda, while providing well paid and secured jobs,” he said.

Dr. Debrah indicated that the implementation of the Nuclear Power Programme and project would generate a lot of local content and local participation in the areas of engineering, manufacturing, civil construction and assembly services, operation and maintenance, and technical support services, among others.

He further argued that nuclear is not only reliable and affordable; it is also about the enormous opportunities it provides.

“We are not just talking about the nuclear power plant and the pricing, we are talking about opportunities it will provide to Ghanaian industries and the benefits to the citizenry,” he added.

Dr. Debrah also noted that with the establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), it is important Ghanaian industries properly position themselves in order to take full advantage of the nuclear power project.

Dr. Debrah said the objective of the Nuclear Power Project is to support the overall economic and industrial transformation as a major driver and also to promote Ghana as a sub-regional energy hub.

With respect to the progress made, he also disclosed that Ghana had completed phase one of the three-phase Nuclear Power Programme and has submitted a Programme Comprehensive Report (PCR) to the seat of government.

By CPRC/CCD

 

 

GAEC participates in Open-Day exhibition of 2021 Civil Service Week Celebration

The Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) on Wednesday participated in the open-day exhibition of the 2021 Civil Service Week Celebration in Accra to showcase its scientific activities and research initiatives.

Some of the activities and initiatives exhibited include the Sterile Insect Technique (SIT) to control and eradicate mosquitoes as well as fall armyworm and fruit flies that are causing damage to maize crops and mangoes, respectively.

The rest are nuclear applications in medicine, nuclear power generation, water resources management, construction, and other industrial support techniques.

The Acting Director of the Commercialization and Communication Director (CCD), Mrs. Sheila Frimpong, said participating in the exhibition was an opportunity to showcase some of the Commission’s nuclear technologies and other scientific endeavors which are addressing societal problems.

Minister of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MESTI), Hon. Dr. Kwaku Afriyie (second right), at the exhibition stand of GAEC during the Civil Service Week Celebration

“The open day is an opportunity to tell the world, the great things our Scientists are doing to improve the lives of Ghanaians. It is also an opportunity to reach out to our key stakeholders and the general public who are looking for solution-driven research and other technologies,” she remarked.

Some of the special guests that visited the GAEC’s stand are the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MESTI), Hon. Dr. Kwaku Afriyie and the Chief Director of MESTI, Cynthia Asare Bediako.

At the stand, also, was the Chief Director of the Office of the Head of the Civil Service (OHCS), Mr. Bernard Brocke. He enjoined the Commission to promote and make known its scientific activities.

“I thought you were only into nuclear power. I did not know you had done these great works in agriculture, among others. Please, let us hear of you more,” he noted.

Interacting with guests and visitors on the scientific endeavors of the Commission at its stand were Research Scientists and Technologists drawn from the National Nuclear Research Institute (NNRI), Biotechnology and Nuclear Agriculture Research Institute (BNARI), Radiation Protection Institute (RPI), Nuclear Power Institute (NPI) and Radiological and Medical Sciences Research Institute (RAMSRI). They are Messrs. Daniel Adjei, Ebenezer Kondo, Elikem Kwaku Ahialey, Francis Aryeequaye, and Lawrence Akono Sarsah.

By CPRC/CCD

GAEC trains actors in tomato value chain

A two-day workshop has been held on tomato processing and marketing techniques for food processors, restaurateurs, entrepreneurs, and vegetable growers by the Biotechnology and Nuclear Agriculture Research Institute (BNARI) of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) in collaboration with the Organization of Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) in Accra.

The objective of the workshop was to equip participants to preserve fresh tomatoes by processing them into powder, canned tomato paste, puree, and sauce, to help reduce post-harvest losses and extend the shelf life of the vegetable.

Facilitators took the participants through topics including tomato processing technology, solar drying of tomato, processing tomato powder, bottling and canning of tomato sauce and tomato paste, quality management systems for tomato processing, and contaminants in the tomato value chain.

The participants were also introduced to a newly developed tomato processing technology that preserves fresh tomatoes called BNARI-Hemaa Kese Dryer, a mixed-mode solar dryer developed by a Senior Research Scientist of the Institute, Dr. Mavis Owureku-Asare.

Dr. Owureku-Asare

 

Addressing participants at the workshop, the Director of BNARI, Dr. Michael Osae expressed delight at the turn-up of participants and their eagerness to acquire knowledge. “Indeed, I must say that the workshop was oversubscribed and there is the need to organize another one to share and propagate this knowledge,” he noted.

He urged participants to use the knowledge acquired at the workshop and adopt the technologies to help boost economic activity whiles reducing post-harvest losses incurred in the tomato value chain.

Making her presentation at the workshop, Dr. Mavis Owureku-Asare, the lead project coordinator, led the participants through the tomato processing and solar drying techniques.

 

She threw light on postharvest management of tomatoes, challenges and solutions available for participants to adopt. “Alternative and convenient domestic processing techniques should be promoted to prevent the high postharvest losses of tomato,” she added.

 

Dr. Owureku-Asare also discussed other processing methods that were available in processing and the various processed products that could be obtained from tomatoes.

Participants in a practical session

Additionally, she explained that the drying of tomatoes is one of the simple technologies that could help reduce contamination and preserve the vegetable’s quality.

A Senior Lecturer in Agricultural Marketing and Agribusiness at the University of Ghana, Dr. Freda Asem, discussed the marketing goals for such products, strategies to use, factors that affect these strategies and some of the key factors to consider when marketing products.

Other facilitators for the workshop were Dr. Joyce Agyei-Amponsah, Dr. Akwasi Akomeah Agyekum, Mr. Damian Laryea, and Mrs. Adjoa Agah. They presented on the quality management systems for tomato processing, contaminants in the tomato value chain with emphasis on mycotoxins, personal hygiene and sanitation at food processing sites, and canning processes.

The Chief Executive Officer of Altar Foods, Ms. Zally Wembeme, who was one of the participants, said she has been equipped with knowledge in tomato processing, how to develop various tomato products and add value to tomatoes.

She urged Ghanaians in the tomato value chain to take the opportunity of subsequent workshops to help boost their businesses and for the unemployed to also acquire employable skills.

By CPRC/CCD

 

 

GAEC TO TRAIN RADIOGRAPHERS IN RADIATION PROTECTION AND SAFETY

The Radiation Protection Institute (RPI) of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) will host a five-day workshop on radiation protection and safety in Accra, from September 27 to October 1, 2021.

The objective of the workshop is to equip Radiographers and X-ray Technicians with the techniques of dealing with risks associated with excessive radiation exposure as well as update practitioners on the right protocols and procedures when performing such radiographic procedures.

According to the Manager of the Radiation, Protection, Training, and Consultancy Center (RPTCC) of RPI, Dr. Stephen Inkoom, the risks associated with excessive radiation exposure cannot be overlooked because it could affect the health of a patient and the practitioner.

“In the day-to-day work of radiographers, it is possible for an unintended part of a patient to be exposed to radiation. For instance, the Doctor asked for an X-ray of the left wrist, however, the right wrist was mistakenly exposed to radiation instead of the left wrist. This scenario requires that the best radiation safety practice should be employed to the benefit of both the patient and the X-ray Technician,” he said.

Manager of RPTCC, Dr. Stephen Inkoom

Dr. Inkoom explained that Radiographers and X-ray Technician are guided by work ethics that ensures protection and safety when exposing patients to any form of radiation. “Before a patient is examined using radiation, the request must be justified by a medical doctor. After the procedure is justified, the examination will then be performed by a Radiographer or X-ray Technician using minimal radiation dose to achieve the needed diagnostic objective,” he added.

The Manager of RPTCC made it known that Ghana is required by the provisions of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Basic Safety Standards to train Radiographers and X-ray Technicians whose work involves radiation exposure.

He added that training in radiation protection and safety was not only an international requirement but also a requirement by the regulatory body that regulates the peaceful use of ionizing radiation in Ghana, the Nuclear Regulatory Authority (NRA) of Ghana.

According to Dr. Inkoom, although the workshop is mainly targeted at Radiographers, X-ray Technicians, however Biomedical Engineers, Radiologists, Darkroom Attendants, and Nurses can also attend, adding: “participants stand to gain credit points from the Allied Health Professions Council of Ghana as part of their Continuous Professional Development (CPD) and career progression.”

“Participants will be given hands-on training, served with lunch during the training, and provided with certificates at the end of the workshop”, he noted.

Topics to be treated include X-ray Imaging Safety in Pediatrics and Pregnant Women, Decommissioning of X-ray machine procedures, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Safety, Radiation Protection in Radiotherapy and Nuclear Medicine.

The others are emerging trends in Diagnostic Imaging, Radiation Protection Trends in Medical Exposure, and Practical Radiation Protection in Digital Radiology.

By: CPRC/CCD/GAEC