Ghana’s Nuclear Energy Mix Project On Course – Environment Minister

Ghana’s quest to add nuclear power to its energy mix is on course and progressing steadily, the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Kwaku Afriyie, has said.

He said as part of the phase two of the project, the country had received feedback on six large reactors and small modular reactors which are key devices needed in the operation of the country’s first nuclear power plant.

He said his ministry and the Ministry of Energy were facilitating and enhancing the coordination role of the Ghana Nuclear Power Programme Organisation (GNPPO) as directed by President Nana Akufo-Addo.


In a speech read on his behalf at a Scientific Innovations Dialogue held in Accra on Friday, he said the country had also entered into agreements and collaborations to build the competences of relevant organisations.

“We are aware of the importance of capacity-building, adherence to high-level safety and following international best practices,” he said at the event held in commemoration of this year’s ‘Day of the Scientific Renaissance of Africa’.

Instituted in 1987, the day is marked on June 30 each year to highlight the critical roles played by science and technology in national development, as well as recall the input of Africa to the rise of modern science and technology.

This year’s event was organised by the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC) on the theme: “Harnessing the power of the atom for economic transformation through science and technology.”

After decades of efforts to include nuclear power in the country’s energy mix, President Akufo-Addo, last year, announced the country’s official commitment based on a comprehensive programme report to signal the end of phase one, with various activities ongoing under phase two.


Justifying the need for the nuclear plant, Dr Afriyie said it was crucial to getting reliable and affordable energy as resilient economies relied on the same for development.

Currently, he said Ghana’s electricity generation had moved from 84 per cent hydro and 14 per cent thermal to 38 per cent hydro and 60 per cent thermal, causing high tariffs due to gas price volatility and erratic gas supply.

He said, “40 per cent of production cost for industries attributed to electricity cost, making it difficult for Ghanaian industries to stay competitive. With almost no hydro potential left to exploit, nuclear and coal as base loads options are very attractive to help reduce tariffs and help the country undergo industrialization.”

Dr Afriyie said nuclear power was the preferred choice because of climate change concerns, adding that the government would continue to invest in research and development to unlock the full potential of nuclear technology.

The GAEC Director-General, Prof. Samuel Dampare, paid tribute to the memory of Ghanaian scientists, such as Prof. Francis Allotey, for blazing the trail for research-driven solutions to problems.

He said the GAEC would continue to collaborate with individuals and organisations to churn out more innovations and technologies for the benefit of people, with a call for more investment in research.

In separate presentations, Dr Fidelis Ocloo and Prof. Francis Hasford made a case for the potential of nuclear techniques in addressing food security, and addressing the cancer challenge using radiation.