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

Borehole water is not always safe

Research conducted by the National Isotope Hydrology Center (NIHC) of the National Nuclear Research Institute of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) has established that water from boreholes is not always safe for domestic use.

This is owed to the fact that most of the land sites on which boreholes are drilled for water may be contaminated with toxic chemicals and heavy metals.

 

Dr. Cynthia Laar
Dr. Cynthia Laar

Dr. Cynthia Laar, a Research Scientist at the NIHC, who made this known in an interview at the Commission, explained that many of these boreholes are drilled without conducting a proper investigation to ascertain the appropriateness of the site as a source of water for domestic use.

“Dental fluorosis, arsenic poisoning, liver and lung cancers are some of the health issues associated with the use of contaminated groundwater” she stressed.

 

Also, Dr. Abass Gibrilla, a Research Scientist at the NIHC advised that borehole water should be tested every two years at least, to ascertain the safety of the water for its continued use.

He noted that the Isotope Hydrology Center uses nuclear technology to investigate the origin, age, recharge mechanisms, and sources of contaminants in groundwater.

“The Center is also involved in site investigations, supervision of borehole drilling and water quality tests”, he indicated.

He added that the NHIC has a well-equipped laboratory and well-qualified human resources needed to support active groundwater research.

 

Dr. Abass Gibrilla
Dr. Abass Gibrilla

Dr. Gibrilla, therefore, urged Ghanaians to show much concern on the quality of the water they drink and take the necessary steps to ensure that their water sources (boreholes) are well constructed and tested to ensure they are free from contaminants and other toxins, which he said were harmful to human health.

“Water is life, But the quality of water we drink defines our health”, he concluded.

 

By CPRC/CCD, GAEC

GAEC boss honoured at International Conference on political/civil strife in Africa

The Director-General of Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, Prof. Benjamin J.B. Nyarko has been honored at the International Conference on Political/Civil Strife in Africa held at the Fiesta Royal Hotel, Accra.

The award, conferred on him by the West Africa International Press Limited, was in recognition of his contribution to the promotion of peace and security in the nuclear industry which has contributed to the socio-economic development of Ghana.

The West African International Press, publishers of the West African International Magazine is concerned with bringing to the forefront issues of corruption, hunger, poverty, and politics among member countries that are detrimental to development.

Additionally, they also collaborate with organizations, ministries, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to organize conferences, trade missions, and award programs in honor of deserving Africans, who have contributed to the promotion of peace and development in their chosen professions.

In his remarks, the chairman for the occasion, Noble Justice Isaac Duose, a retired Appeals Court Judge, who is also the chairman of the governing council of Wisconsin International University College noted that peace and security are essential elements for the development of every nation.

“Where a people are so tied unshakably to the rightness of their tribe or religion, conflict, strife is bound to arise” he stated.

Noble Justice Duose indicated the inter-tribal strife is bound to be abundant and serious where people are not prepared to eschew their pride and intolerance of other peoples’ tribes.

“To be honest, unless our leaders are honest and humble enough to admit and to take advantage of our variety, we will continue to be in strife,” he added.

The award ceremony brought together professionals from various government agencies and industries including education, health, manufacturing, and business for excellence and contribution to peace and development.

By: CPRC/CCD

Nyonko Do Farmers Association gets technical assistance from GAEC

The Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) has decided to offer technical support to a farm-based organization, Nyonko Do Farmers Association (NDFA), in the area of Agriculture and Agribusiness.

The decision was the outcome of a meeting between GAEC and NDFA on Wednesday, 27th January 2021.

Last year, NDFA approached the Commission to seek collaboration, support, and expertise to help boost the Association’s agric-related businesses, in line with Government’s 1D1F project.

 

A representative of the Association, Madam Cynthia Mensa made a strong case for the collaboration between GAEC, financial institutions, and farm-based groups within the country, adding that it would help create and sustain a viable value chain for the agricultural sector in its bid to actualize the aims of the 1D1F.

“GAEC is a credible institution, the reason we are here today seeking opportunities in terms of technical assistance from the scientists, funding and business plans/models”, she indicated.

 

“In spite of the farmer’s ability to produce in tons, they face a number of challenges, including, access to funds, technical know-how, and post-harvest losses”, she added.

The Acting Director of Commercialization and Communication Directorate (CCD), Mrs. Sheila Frimpong, in a brief remark, said since the first meeting last year, a lot of paperwork on collaboration between the two entities had been done.

“A memorandum of understanding has been drafted and forwarded to the Office of Legal Affairs of GAEC for their consideration and approval”, she added.

 

The Director of Biotechnology and Nuclear Agricultural Research Institute (BNARI) of GAEC, Dr. Micheal Osae, also enumerated the various areas of assistance the Institute would offer the Association.

This he said includes soil testing, compost production, and irrigation systems. He added that post-harvest management services with a solar dryer and Gamma irradiation technology were available to address post-harvest losses.

 

A representative from the Ghana Space Science and Technology Institute (GSSTI) of GAEC, Mr. Patrick Lamptey, also noted that as part of the collaboration, drone technology, and satellite imaging would be used for weather forecasting and monitoring of irrigation, fertilizer, and pesticide application.

Meanwhile, the GAEC team would arrange and take a tour of the farms and projects being undertaken by NDFA at their base in Kasoa in the Central Region. This visit would allow the team to familiarize themselves with the issues raised by the farmers firsthand. The visit to the project site would inform the next line of action.

Ghanaian Nuclear Scientist Elected Member of IPRA Executive Council

Dr. Joseph Amoako Deputy Director, Radiation Protection Institute
Dr. Joseph Amoako
Deputy Director, Radiation Protection Institute

The International Radiation Protection Association (IRPA) has elected Dr. Joseph Amoako as a member of its Executive Council for the 2021-2024 tenure.

Dr. Amoako was elected to the Council following the announcement of three vacant positions which were keenly contested by candidates from Ghana, Australia, the United Kingdom, and South Korea, among others.

He is the first African to be elected to the Executive Council, the highest decision-making body of the Association.

Dr. Amoako is the Deputy Director of the Radiation Protection Institute of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, and also the Vice President of the Ghana Association for Radiation Protection. He is a Senior Lecturer at the Graduate School of Nuclear and Allied Sciences of the University of Ghana.

He spearheaded groundbreaking research in Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection at the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission. This has helped in the monitoring of Mobile Phone Base Stations in Ghana, assessment of Microwave devices, and Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machines, among others. Dr. Amoako was an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) fellow at the Greek Atomic Energy Commission in Occupation Radiation Protection.

IRPA is the international association of radiation protection professionals with 53 associate societies in 68 countries.

IPRA promotes high professional competence, radiation protection culture, and practice by providing benchmarks of good practice and encouraging the application of the highest standards of professional conduct, skills, and knowledge for the benefit of individuals and society.

By CPRC/CCD