Power and Renewable Energy
Overview of the Power and Renewable Energy Industry
Overview of the Power and Renewable Energy Industry
The Power industry includes public and private organisations involved in the generation, transmission, distribution, sale, and regulation of electric power to the general public, and industry constitutes the power sector. These companies are broadly categorised into:
- Generating Companies (GENCOS): The power generating companies are responsible for generating electricity for Industrial/Household use. They also manage the generating plants in the power sector, e.g. Thermal Power plants, Hydroelectric power plants, Solar Power Plants, and Wind power plants.
- Transmission Companies (TRANSCO): Electrical power transmission firms construct infrastructure that transports electrical energy from generating sites (power plants or stations) to an electrical substation. The voltage is converted at an electric substation before being transferred to consumers by distribution companies.
- Distribution Companies (DISCOS): Once electricity has been generated at the production points, the distribution companies are responsible for transporting the energy to the various consumption or supply points. They are in charge of managing, maintaining, and updating the electricity distribution network, which includes towers, cables, transformer stations, and substations, among other things
The renewable-energy industry is part of the power industry, focusing on alternative and clean energy sources from natural sources or processes that are constantly replenished. Renewables provide power in small units and at a large scale with technologies from rooftop solar panels in homes to giant offshore wind farms that power communities. With renewable energy technologies, homes and office buildings can be net power producers and supply the grid for power distribution.
Examples of renewable energy are:
- Solar Energy: Solar or photovoltaic (PV) cells are made from silicon or other materials that transform sunlight directly into electricity. Solar systems generate electricity for homes and businesses on a local/global level, either through rooftop panels or community projects that power entire neighbourhoods/states.
- Wind Energy: this type of renewable energy generates electric energy from the kinetic energy source. A wind turbine converts wind energy into mechanical energy, converted into electrical power through a generator.
- Hydroelectric Power: Hydropower uses water, typically fast-moving water in a large river or rapidly descending water from a high point, and converts the force of that water into electricity by spinning the turbine blades of a generator.
- Geothermal Energy: geothermal energy refers to the heat within the earth. Geothermal energy is a renewable energy source—as heat is continuously produced inside the earth. Geothermal heat can be used for bathing, heating buildings, and generating electricity.
Their renewable energy development is being accelerated due to consideration for climate change, demand for cleaner energy sources, and support for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policies.
According to GlobeNewswire, the global Electric power generation, transmission, and distribution market is expected to grow from $4,091.77 billion in 2021 to $4,433.15 billion in 2022 at a rate of 8.3%. Also, the market is expected to reach $5,932.43 billion in 2026 at a CAGR of 7.6%. The latest edition of the IEA’s semi-annual Energy Market Report reports a decline of 1% in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. However, global electricity demand was expected to climb to 5% in 2021 and 4% in 2022, driven by the global economic recovery.
Statista reports from 2021 to 2030, the global renewable energy market is predicted to grow from $612.77 billion in 2020 to $1,129.75 trillion in 2027. According to the International Renewable Energy Agency Energy Transformation Report (2019), Renewable energy sources like solar and wind could meet 86 per cent of power demands by 2050. Furthermore, the paper claims that by 2050, renewable energy will have created more jobs than fossil fuel companies have lost.
The African Development Bank Group (AFDB) reports that more than 640 million Africans lack access to energy. African countries have an electricity access rate of just over 40%, the lowest worldwide. As a result, Africa has a massive electricity demand challenge. Existing infrastructure is insufficient to meet current demands, let alone the exponential growth expected in the coming decades. According to PWC, Sub-Saharan Africa’s installed power capacity is expected to increase from 90 GW in 2012 to 380 GW in 2040.
Solar and wind energy together constituted 3% of Africa’s generated electricity in 2018, versus 7% in other world regions. An International Energy Agency (IEA) report states that renewable energy will make up almost half of sub-Saharan Africa’s power generation growth by 2040. Although wind and solar energy have grown increasingly cost-competitive, Africa struggles behind the rest of the globe in renewable energy implementation.
In 2022, the Ghana Ministry of Power projects to make an expenditure amount of GH¢5,644,000.00 for Compensation, GH¢38,261,000.00 for Goods and Services, of which GH¢15,261,000.00 has been allocated to the main Ministry (Headquarters), GH¢ 20,000,000.00 for Petroleum Hub Corporation and GH¢ 3,000,000.00 to Nuclear Power Ghana. Regarding the allocations received for CAPEX, the Ministry projects to expend an amount of GH¢225,604,000.00. GH¢30,000,000.00 has been allocated to the Petroleum Hub Corporation. In addition, expenditure from Development Partner Funds amounts to GH¢255,209,000.00 and Retained Internally Generated Fund amounts to GH¢36,625,000.00. The Ministry will expend GH¢561,343,000.00 to run its programmes and projects earmarked for 2022.
Hydro generation and thermal generation fueled by crude oil, natural gas, and diesel continue to be the primary sources of Ghana’s power supply. Ghana also exports power to Togo, Benin, and Burkina Faso. Ongoing grid expansions, which include the completion of transmission lines and Bulk Supply Points (BSPs), will allow further exports to other neighbouring countries in the sub-region. The total installed capacity for existing plants in Ghana is 5,134 Megawatt (MW), with a dependable capacity of 4,710 MW. Thermal generation accounts for the largest share of Ghana’s power generation, representing 66%, with hydro accounting for 33%. In 2018, according to the country’s Energy Commission (EC), Ghana’s installed power generation capacity stood at 4320 MW, up from 3660 MW in 2015. Furthermore, industrial activity accounted for around 26% of the country’s total electricity consumption.
The state is still heavily involved in the energy sector, with state entities having a controlling presence in the entire value chain. In the generation phase, the entire hydroelectricity component is controlled by the Volta River Authority (VRA) and Bui Power Authority (BPA), with VRA also involved in some aspects of thermal generation along with Independent Power Producers (IPP). There is currently a moratorium on signing new power purchase agreements (PPAs) for renewable and conventional/thermal power plants. State-owned Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCO) is still solely responsible for transmission throughout the country. The final leg of distribution is mainly controlled by the state-owned entities Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCO). A private entity, Enclave Power Company, plays a minor role in the distribution chain.
The electricity access rate stands at 86.63% (2021), with 50% rural and 91% urban residents connected to the electricity grid. However, Ghana’s energy sector has significant debt. The Ghana renewable power sector has a total of 152.34-Gigawatt hour (GWh) of electrical energy expected from Renewable Energy sources in 2021. The sources include grid-connected solar RE farms at Bui, the embedded BXC and Meinergy solar plants, and VRA’s facilities at Navrongo and Lawra/Kaleo.
The total per capita energy consumption in 2020 was an estimated 0.52 toe. Per Capita electricity consumption was around 170 kWh, much higher than neighbour countries (60% higher than in Tanzania, twice that in Uganda).
Bioenergy is 64.6% of the total primary energy supply in Kenya: Oil products (16.9 %), renewable energy sources such as wind and solar (15.2%), and coal and hydropower (1.9%). Kenya spends estimated half of its yearly foreign exchange on petroleum and oil imports. As a result, Kenya is highly vulnerable to supply and pricing shocks in international markets. Kenya brought a new 50 megawatt (MW) solar plant, which means renewable energy, led by hydroelectricity, now makes up more than 90% of its power mix. Most of Kenya’s electricity is already generated by renewable sources, with geothermal ranked the second-biggest source of installed power generation after hydroelectricity.
According to the International Energy Agency, the energy sector contributed 0.18 USD Trillion to GDP in 2018 and is projected to reach 0.45 USD Trillion.
According to the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA), the country’s highest energy gross demand was recorded on 18th May 2022, registered a 2.5% growth to a new peak of 37,273.17MWh up from 36,380.63MWh in November last year.
Kenya has had the fastest electrification rates in sub-Saharan Africa since 2013. By 2018, 75% of the population had access. Kenya aims to reach full access by 2022; the grid would be the principal least-cost solution for most of the population (mainly in the south) still lacking access.
The country ranks 40th worldwide in EY’s renewable energy country attractiveness index.
In Nigeria, the power sector generates, transmits, and distributes megawatts of energy, far less than is required to meet basic residential and industrial demands. According to KPMG, Nigeria’s average generation and transmission were 4,000 Megawatts (MW) (although the generation occasionally hits the 5,000MW mark), with an average of 3,000MW distributed to electricity consumers. In addition, a significant infrastructural challenge has contributed to the low power available to the population.
According to Modor Intelligence, hydropower accounted for about 12.5% of its on-grid energy in Nigeria at the end of 2020. The industry will see significant investment if the current trend continues, potentially boosting the country’s renewable energy generation. As a result of these advancements, renewable electricity generation is likely to become a vital driver of the country’s power industry.
The overall domestic electricity generation capacity of South Africa, from all sources, is 58,095 megawatts (MW), according to the Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy. At the moment, coal accounts for almost 80% of the energy mix in South Africa, making it by far the most important energy source. However, 24,100 MW of conventional thermal power sources – coal, are anticipated to be retired within the next 10 to 30 years, according to the 2019 Integrated Resource Plan (IRP).
The installed solar power capacity in South Africa in 2016 was 1,329 MW. By 2030, the installed capacity is expected to reach 8,400 MW.
To lessen the nation’s excessive reliance on coal, the South African government has given 25 contracts for renewable energy projects totalling 50 billion rands, or $2.8 billion. According to Energy Minister Gwede Manthashe, the 25 projects—12 wind farms and 13 photovoltaic plants—awarded to the private sector will boost the nation’s energy generation capacity to 2,583 megawatts (MW), or 4.5 per cent higher than it is now.
South Africa’s economy suffers daily losses of more than $30 million due to power outages. This has increased operational costs for enterprises and decreased profitability and productivity in some parts of the country.
Smart Grid & Smart Meters
A smart grid establishes a two-way communication in which electricity and information can be exchanged between a utility (power companies) and its customers. Customers can monitor their electricity blueprint with a smarter grid, allowing for consumer participation. A Smart Grid example is the Smart Meter, which enables consumers to monitor their electricity usage and purchase electricity units instead of the traditional meter system. Consumers are given bills at the end of the month. The smart grid system also aids in the notification of power outages to the utility.
Increased Research and Investment in Battery Technologies
As the world increasingly replaces fossil fuel power with emissions-free electrification, batteries have become an essential storage tool to help with the energy transition. As a result, demand for battery storage has increased exponentially. Hence, research and investment have poured into the battery industry to develop long-term storage solutions that will aid in the energy transition. Lithium-ion batteries are an example of Battery technology in high demand in the market.
Tariffs to drive up the use of renewable energy
Feed-in tariffs are a policy mechanism that has been used around the world to encourage investment and the usage of renewable energy sources. It is accomplished by promising small-scale energy providers, such as solar or wind energy, at a higher-than-market delivery price. Feed-in tariffs are often long-term agreements with pricing connected to the energy’s cost of production. Long-term contracts and fixed pricing protect producers from risks associated with renewable energy production, promoting investment and development.
Waste to Energy/Biomass
Waste to Energy (WtE) Technology or Waste Biomass is being used to harness waste as a source of energy. The energy content of various types of waste such as scrap lumber, forest debris, certain crops, plastics, papers, etc. They can be converted into multiple forms of usable energy using the Waste to Energy or Biomass technologies. The energy generated by these methods, such as heat/biomass fuel, can be used to generate electricity in power plants.
The decline in the use of coal
According to SNL Energy, approximately 25,000 MW of coal capacity has been retired since 2009, with formal plans to retire roughly the same coal capacity by 2022. Lower electricity demand due to Covid19 restrictions and the resulting economic downturn was the primary driver of the decline. In addition, the preferential use of renewables in many markets reduced the share of gas and coal in the electricity mix.
Pay as you go plan for solar panels
It is a payment plan devised by some solar companies to allow consumers easy access to solar products. The pay-as-you-go solar panel plan simplifies and expedites installing a solar system while increasing access to clean energy. In general, you pay an agreed-upon amount of money each month or week before having complete control over the solar product.
A growing interest in next-generation clean energy technologies
Next-generation technologies are becoming increasingly popular, and stakeholders in the renewable energy industry consider investing in them. It could eventually aid in the confident integration of variable renewables. These technologies can deliver zero-carbon electricity and longer-term seasonal electricity storage, alleviate system congestion, reduce renewable restrictions, and increase dependability. In addition, they ease the integration of solar and wind into the grid, all while supporting 100% clean energy targets.
Solar champions new configurations
Solar photovoltaic (PV) systems are some of the most cost-effective energy options available. Therefore, the solar energy sector will increase its attempts to explore new designs and business models as it exercises its competitive strength. As a result, in the coming years, the industry may see an increase in solar-plus-storage installations, the exploration of floating solar PV modules, and the expansion of community solar projects into new markets.
Transmission Infrastructure Development
Transmission projects, particularly interregional ones, have remained a major barrier to renewable growth, owing to the difficulty in obtaining regulatory approval from every state they cross and refusals from landowners and opposition from environmental groups. Nevertheless, according to a recent Deloitte survey, 76 per cent of power and utility respondents are either planning or relying on new transmission projects to increase renewable energy access.
Energy Resources Audit
Evaluation of the available non-renewable energy sources (crude oil, natural gas, tar sand, and coal)
Renewable energy resource potential (Hydropower, solar, biomass, wind).
Energy and Power Generation (Non- renewable Sources)
Establishment of the existing power generation capacity of the various power plants operating in the country, including the identification of their operational problems (material, human and organisational)
Environmental impact assessment of power generation systems
Development of technologies for efficient conversion into electricity
Design and production of various energy converters
Energy mix to meet demand
Economics of power generation.
Energy and Power Generation (Renewable Sources)
- Hydro: Development of mini- and micro-hydropower schemes Environmental impact of dam construction
Design and construction of hydropower stations
Engineering design and production of hydropower plants, equipment, and accessories
- Solar Energy: Development of solar energy conversion technologies for the production of heat and electricity
Manufacturing of solar energy production systems Market studies of solar energy systems
Developing efficient and less hazardous biomass conversion devices and systems to utilise materials such as agricultural residues and animal and human waste as energy sources, particularly in rural areas.
- Wind Energy
Wind data acquisition across the country and development of wind maps
Development of wind energy conversion technologies
Locally produced wind power systems’ components and spare parts.
Keeping abreast of international trends in hydrogen production and application
Developing a database on the potential of this emerging energy resource
Developing local capacity for hydrogen to ensure hydrogen utilisation as a preferred energy source.
Evaluation of the existing transmission systems in the country, identifying operational problems
Transmission systems to minimise losses and damages to the environment
Materials for electricity transmission.
Identification of the existing distribution systems in the country
Spatial distribution of electricity demand and supply
The economics of power distribution.
The organisational structure for the optimal management of the national energy generation, transmission and distribution systems.
Other areas include batteries, design and construction of hydropower stations, batteries, biofuel, design and production of various energy converters, and solar energy production systems. Development of mini- and micro-hydropower schemes, development of solar energy conversion technologies for the production of heat and electricity, Economics of power generation, privatisation and employment in the power sector.
SDG 7 – Affordable and Clean Energy
Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7 or Global Goal 7) aims to “Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy. The Renewable Energy Industry is a focus of SDG7 as it helps in improving global access to affordable and reliable energy globally.
SDG 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth
The power industry contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal 8 through:
- Creation of decent jobs within the industry
- Production of electricity via different sources to drive economic growth
SDG 9 – Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure & SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities
The power industry contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals 9&11 through:
- Innovation projects enable easy access to electricity, e.g smart grid systems, new battery technology, solar roof tiles, etc.
- Aiding energy-neutral buildings and cities, facilities, and infrastructure that runs on renewable sources to generate electricity reduces their carbon footprint.
- Building sustainable appliances or gadgets.
Dilapidated power infrastructures
Dilapidated infrastructure is one of Nigeria’s most significant concerns in the power sector. Despite the privatisation of Nigeria’s electricity sector, the country’s electrical infrastructure has not been entirely rebuilt. As a result, the power sector lacks adequate infrastructure to satisfy Nigeria’s electrical demands. Many power lines, transformers, power grids, distribution stations, and other components malfunction, resulting in a current loss in transit. The poor infrastructure employed by electricity distributors is primarily to blame for the power loss in transit in the distribution arm of the sector.
Vandalism and theft
The rise in electricity distribution network vandalism poses a severe threat to the power sector’s sustainability and economic growth. It results in power outages and a lack of power supply in some parts. The common electrical theft in the country is meter bypass or illegal connections, leading to revenue losses by the power companies and thereby affecting production.
Regulation of the power industry
Inconsistent enforcement of rules and policies is a significant contributor to the problems faced in the Nigeria Power Sector. Since the privatisation of the Nigeria power sector, regulating standards of performance of the industry activities by the government regulatory bodies has become less effective. As a result, it has led to various issues (like the overcharging of electric customers by the distribution companies) plunging the sector.
According to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (“NERC”), the electricity customer population stands at 7.48 million, of which only 3.39million (45.3% of the identified customer population) have meters. As a result, about 4.09 million customers do not have metres. Despite the government intervention to ensure customers have meters, many customers are still without meters which affects the control of consumption and the amount charged for electricity. Also, DisCos are reluctant to deploy meters because they use an estimated billing system to boost their revenues.
High cost of some sources
Africa’s power sector has numerous issues, primarily due to a lack of generation capacity, which results in limited electrical supply and inadequate access. The high cost of producing power is the principal impediment to increasing electricity generation capacity, compelling governments to subsidise consumption. Fossil-fuel-based power generation is the largest source of electricity generation in Africa. However, fossil fuels are the most expensive way to generate electricity, and increasing fuel prices may worsen this.
Wide investment gap and Poor financing
After privatising the Nigerian power sector, the sector faced severe financial difficulties. Most investors who purchased the power companies borrowed a lot of money from banks to buy the assets. As a result, they are attempting to repay their loans rather than investing in infrastructure revitalisation due to insufficient finance. According to a KPMG report, despite the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Economic Recovery Commission (NERC) ’s effort to resolve the industry’s financial problem, the power sector continues to be burdened by massive debt. As a result, there is a lack of capital investment.
Environmental/Noise Pollution from Generators
Generators are contributing to environmental/noise pollution in numerous sections of the country due to an increase in the use of generators (Diesel or Petrol Generators), which citizens blame on power distribution companies’ inability to deliver consistent electricity. The increased usage of generators as a backup plan for businesses and inhabitants in the country pollutes the environment and adds to global warming, and has been a cause of concern for the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) of the country.
Low willingness to pay for access to electricity
Improving access to electricity in developing countries is a complex problem because of the high costs of grid extension and the low demand for grid electricity in rural areas. Many residents of rural areas who are demanding access to electricity have not been willing to pay to get the quantity of electricity they need. As a result, it has cost them access to electricity. Lack of willingness to pay for electricity has led to an increase in electricity theft.
The Challenge in the Nigeria Renewable Energy Industry
Achieving affordable clean energy is a challenge in Nigeria and other African nations. Most of the current clean energy strategies are either not sustainable or poorly maintained. Nigeria is a major exporter of fossil fuels but is currently faced with a significant energy crisis. As a result, there is a search for a sustainable renewable form of energy as an alternative to fossil fuels to meet SDG 7.
Enabling Government Policy
Biofuel is recognised as a sustainable form of renewable energy in Nigeria. Sugarcane, cassava, plant seed, waste materials and feedstocks for bioethanol and biodiesel production. However, technological advancement and governmental policy are not well framed or developed to cater to this, which has hindered any progress in that light.
Land Tenure Practice
Despite the land use decree, the customary land tenure practice continues to dominate, which gives the community control over land use. Communal control over land in Nigeria creates a lot of bottlenecks for investors due to tribal and ethnic clashes over land disputes. In addition, it has brought considerable drawbacks to the use of fallow land in some rural communities with massive arable land to grow feedstock for biofuel production.
Another major challenge is the invasion of farmland by grassing herders. The herdsmen have become a major threat to farming in most rural areas in Nigeria, which has recorded a severe loss of human lives. In addition, it has created many communal issues bringing a setback to the use of farmland for cultivating feedstock for biofuel production.
High Production Cost
High production cost makes it discouraging to embark on the production of biofuel, mainly bioethanol and biodiesel. Moreover, in some cases, the feedstocks used can also serve as food, which has caused competition between the resources serving as feedstock for biofuel and, at the same time, food. Since this may likely be a threat to food, the current move is to consider the use of feedstocks that are nonfood. Furthermore, with discoveries in science and technology, Priority should be given to processes that make biofuel production environmentally friendly and cost-effective.
Innovations in the Power and Renewable Industry:
Solar companies are integrating photovoltaic (PV) systems into every aspect of our surroundings, reducing the need for additional land use. As a result, integrated PV, floatovoltaics, and agrivoltaics are logical shifts in trends. Furthermore, startups are working on thin-film cells to make solar panels more flexible, cost-effective, lightweight, and environmentally friendly. Finally, emerging companies are developing technologies to concentrate solar power using mirrors and lenses to improve PV performance.
Distributed Energy Storage Systems.
Distributed Energy Storage Systems (DESS) localises renewable energy generation and storage, overcoming production irregularities. Startups are offering a variety of battery and batteryless solutions based on financial and other requirements. They are also developing batteryless storage alternatives such as pumped hydro and compressed air technologies in response to discharge, safety, and environmental pollution concerns.
Solar Roof Tiles
Solar panels are usually put on top of house roofs. Solar roof tiles use the same concept. However, instead of putting panels on the roof, the tiles are solar panels. As a result, this allows for more solar energy because of the increased surface area and eliminates the need for traditional tiles.
Artificial Intelligence and Big Data
The energy grid is a complex infrastructure requiring real-time decision-making. Big data and AI algorithms enable utilities to do. In addition, Power consumption forecasting and predictive maintenance of renewable energy sources are two applications of AI in the renewables sector. It also allows the internet of energy applications, which predict grid capacity levels and perform time-based autonomous trading and pricing.
Production and process efficiency is proving to be a significant barrier to harnessing renewable energy. To overcome this challenge, robotics enables accuracy and optimal resource utilisation. Automated solar panels, for example, orient themselves to maximise energy conversion. Automation of equipment also speeds up maintenance processes while reducing the need for human intervention. In addition, drones create digital site twins and 3D maps by imaging and calculating elevation data and help in inspection and operations (handling dangerous, repetitive work). And also improving safety and productivity.
Energy startups use blockchain technology to advance trusted transactions in the renewable energy sector. Smart contracts, for example, advance peer-to-peer (P2P) electricity trading for transactive energy. Also, blockchain technology is used to encrypt the data associated with grid operations and monitoring as it’s vulnerable to cyber threats. Renewable energy providers are also using blockchain to track the chain of custody of grid materials. It also makes it simple for regulators to access data for regulatory compliance.
Job roles in this industry vary depending on the branch of the power & renewable sector you’re working with. As a result, the jobs available in the renewable energy sector might differ from those in the power sector, and the required technical skills and qualifications might also vary. Here is a list of some of the jobs in the Power and Renewable Energy Industry:
Careers in GENCO
Power Plant Operator, Electrical Design Engineer, Shift Charge, Engineer, Outage Manager, Line Workers, Solar Project, Developer/Manager, Wind Farm Site Manager, Civil Engineer in Energy Companies, Geoscientist, Solar Power Plant Operator
Careers in TRANSCO
Project Manager, Transmission, Mechanic, Transmission, Planning Engineer, Transmission Specialist, Transmission Line Mechanic, Transmission Line Worker, Transmission System Operator, Transmission Engineer, Distribution Engineer, Transmission Operator, Transmission Technician, Transmission Line Design Engineer
Careers in DISCO
Distribution Substation Operator, Software Developer, Account Payable/Account Receivable Supervisor , Electrician/Electrical Technician, Accountant, Technical Engineer/Analyst, Energy Management (Operations), Commercial & Advisory / Contract Management, Risk Officer, Information Technology Auditor , Metering and Inspection Officer, Protection & Control Officer, Procurement Officer, Marketing and Customer Care Professional, Safety Manager
Other Job Roles include:
Energy Analyst, Application Engineer, Solar Sales Representative, Energy Transition Technical Specialist, Architecture and Design, Project Manager, Environmental officer, Financial Analyst, Land Acquisition Specialist, Information Systems Manager
Highest Paying Job/Role
Energy Analyst, Wind Farm Site Manager, Wind Turbine Service Technicians, Solar Energy Technicians/Installers, Financial Analyst, Power Plant Operator, Distributor, & Dispatcher, Project Manager, Geoscientist, Electrical Designer
Continual Learning & Adaptation
Working in the energy sector requires a range of technical skills. In addition, renewable energy employees need an excellent grasp of scientific principles and concepts to make decisions based on facts and reliable data.
Communication & Persuasion
Articulating ideas both in writing and verbally is so essential. In addition, strong communication skills are required to make real change, establish networks, and work with teams and clients within this sector.
Networking & Teamwork
Teamwork drives ideas and success. Its important as a professional in the energy industry to communicate and coordinate effectively between teams – even when you don’t share the same technical skills with other team members.
Analysis & Problem-Solving
The Power and Renewable energy systems are at the heart of modern society. There is a high demand for professionals in this industry. Suppose you desire to work in the power and renewable energy industry. In that case, you’ll need a degree that teaches the new-and old – energy management technologies.
Below is a list of degrees that can be pursued to transition into the industry:
Bachelor’s degree in Energy Management, Engineering Degree; Electrical/Electronics, Chemical engineering, Construction Management, Renewable Energy, Electrical Engineering, Bachelor’s Programme in Energy Technology, B.Eng. in Energy Systems Engineering, B.Sc. New Energy Science & Engineering.
Master’s degree in Renewable energy, Sustainable Energy, Smart Electrical network and systems, Energy for Smart City, Nuclear Energy, Energy Storage, Energy Technologies, Electrical Power Systems,
Health Safety and Environment, Project Management Professional (PMP), Renewable Energy Professional (REP™), Galileo Master Certification (GMC), Power Systems Engineering Graduate Certificate, System Design Certification, Power & Energy Systems Certificate, Energy Management Professional, Advanced Electric Power Engineering Certification
Training programs are usually available in:
Energy policy, Power systems., Solar Photovoltaics technology, Hydrogen Energy technology, Electrics for Renewables technology, Biomass technology
Wave and Hydro Power technologies
A career in the renewable energy sector could make you one of the numerous change-makers globally. Entering the industry can seem like a mammoth task at first. However, it’s not that different from how you’d approach joining any other sector.
Here are a few tips for you:
The renewable energy sector is fast-growing, so there is no job shortage. On the contrary, it has some of the best paying jobs globally.
Get In Touch With Industry Specialists
It would help if you got an insight into the career path you’ve chosen, which may not be on the internet, from a specialist in the industry. An industry specialist can provide you with information that will allow you to determine whether you’ll be able to handle the job you’re interested in.
Research About Any Required Training
While you wait for your dream job in the renewable energy sector, it’s advisable to research the necessary certifications or level of skills needed for the career path you’ve chosen. Look out for an internship or apprenticeship position so you can get much-needed experience. Once the suitable job vacancy finally shows up, you’ll be ready for it.
Do Some Networking
After doing everything else, reach out to industry leaders to stay informed on any new developments or updates—platforms like LinkedIn connect with individuals who might achieve your goal. Your next employer might be one brave move away, so take the initiative and get to networking.
Considering starting a company in the industry? Areas with lower barriers to entry and fewer upfront investments are renewable energy services such as solar.
Salary varies in the industry and is determined mainly by employees’ qualifications and technical experience. Although the salary in this industry ranges, international companies pay more to their workers and offer more benefits. Some benefits often offered by some top power companies include Health insurance, Sick leave, Retirement plan, and flexible working hours.
Trans-Mediterranean Renewable Energy Cooperation
Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)
International Solar Energy Society
Renewable Fuels Association
Canadian Renewable Fuels Association
American Public Power Association (APPA)
National Association of Power Engineers (NAPE)
Electric Power Supply Association (EPSA)
Power Engineering Society (IEEE)
Association of Energy Engineers (AEE)
Association of Ghana Solar Industries, The Renewable Association of Ghana
The Kenya Renewable Energy Association, Electricity Sector Association of Kenya
Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria (REAN), Nigerian Association For Energy Economics, Sustainable Energy Practitioners Association of Nigeria (SEPAN)
Nigerian Gas Association, The Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED), Association of Power Generation Companies (APGC)
Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), South African National Energy Association (SANEA), South African Wind Energy Association, and South African Renewable Energy Council (SAREC).
Enoch Agyepong, Emmanuel Antwi, Ernest Amissah, Mahama Kappiah
Wangari Muchiri, Darshan Chandaria, Bertha Dlamini, Jackson Waweru, Francis Njogu
Tonye Cole, Damilola Ogunbiyi , Segun Adaju, Hannah Kabir, Olusegun Odunaiya
André de Ruyter, Fumani Mthembi, Linda Mabhena-Olagunju, Nikolai Germann, Patrick Davies.
IRENA – International Renewable Energy Agency
Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. US Dept. of Energy
International Energy Agency: IEA
American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE)
International Renewable Energy Alliance
WCRE – World Council for Renewable Energy
Clean Energy Institute (CEI) at the University of Washington
Canadian Energy Regulator (CER)
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)
Energy Commission, Public Utilities Regulatory Commission, Ministry of Energy and Petroleum
Ministry of Energy
Renewable Energy Technology Training Institute (RETTI), The National Environmental, Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Federal Ministry of Environment, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Federal Ministry of Power, Works, and Housing, Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company plc, Nigeria Electricity Liability Management Company, Rural Electrification Agency.
Department of Energy, Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy, National Energy Regulator (NERSA).
The power sector consists of 3 branches: Generating Companies that generate electric energy through different sources for Industrial/Household use; Transmission Companies that construct infrastructure that transports electrical energy from generating sites to substations; Distribution Companies are responsible for distributing power to consumers.
General Electric, ABB Limited, Siemens AG, ABB Kuhlman, Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, CG Power and Industrial Solutions Limited (CG), Diamond Power Infrastructure Limited, Eaton Corporation plc, Cooper Industries plc, EFACEC Power Solutions, GE Grid Solutions, LLC, Hammond Power Solutions, Inc., Howard Industries, Inc., Hubbell Incorporated, Hyosung Power & Industrial Systems Performance Group, Hyundai Electric & Energy Systems Co., Ltd., Imefy Group, JiangSu HuaPeng Transformer Co., Ltd. (JSHP), Kirloskar Electric Company Limited, KONCAR-Elektroindustrija d.d., Larsen & Toubro Limited, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Pioneer Power Solutions, Inc., Bemag Transformer, Jefferson Electric, Harmonics Limited, Regal Beloit Corporation, S&C Electric Company Inc., Schneider Electric SE, SPX Transformer Solutions, Inc., Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions Corporation, Wilson Power Solutions Ltd., Xi’an XD Transformer Co., Ltd.
CropEnergies AG, SunPower Corporation, Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras SA, Renewable Energy Group Inc. (REGI), Hanergy Holding Group, Brookfield Renewable Partners L.P., First Solar Inc. (FSLR), JinkoSolar Holding Co. Ltd. (JKS), NextEra Energy, Inc., Orsted A/S (DNNGY), Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy SA (GCTAY), SA, Vestas Wind Systems A/S (VWDRY), Tesla, Inc., Iberdrola, SA, Iberdrola SA (IBDRY), Brookfield Renewable Partners LP (BEP), Canadian Solar Inc. (CSIQ), SunPower Corp. (SPWR), Abengoa SA, Acciona, Ascent Solar Technologies, Inc, Azure Power, Ballard Power Systems, Boralex Inc, Enlight Renewable Energy Ltd., Enviva, General Electric, Goldwind, Infigen Energy, iSun isunenergy.com.
Nocheski Solar, Solar Light Company Ltd, SolarEnablers Ghana Limited, Electricity Company Of Ghana, Sunpower Innovations, Redavia Solar Power, Dyson Energy, Deep Solar Ghana, Aker Energy, H2O Solutions Tech Ltd, Takoradi Renewable Power Resources Limited, Sinaresey Company Limited, DAS Biogas & Construction Company, Klatch Solutions, Africano Electro, Beaver Energy Company, Franerix Solutions Ltd, Optima Solar Systems Limited, Africa Renewable Energy Technology Limited, Ajebs Enterprise, Atati Electrical Services, Dutch & Co Ltd, Jopa Energy International, BRETech Ghana Limited, Alternate Power Services Ltd, AEL Specialist Electrical Distributors, Ghana Grid Company Limited
M-Kopa Solar, Strauss Energy, Clasp, Trine, Engie Energy Access Kenya, Power House, Solektra international, X-solar, Sistema.bio, Zuhura solutions, Widenergy, Vuma Biofuels, Sun funder, Solarise Africa, Powergen Renewable Energy, Pawame, Future Pump, Associated Battery Manufacturers East Africa, Xenom Energy, ResponsAbility Renewable Energy Holding, Safi Power, Kengen, Greenchar, Kenya Power, Bboxx Kenya, Dalbit International, Kipeto Energy Limited Company, Plexus Energy Limited, Gapco, Selenkei Investments, Tsavo Power Company, Kenya Climate Innovation Centre, Kinangop Wind Park Limited, Deevabits Green Energy, Afrisol Energy, Illumina Africa Limited, Flex Energy, Global Supply Solutions, Eco Makaa
Schneider Electric Nig. Ltd, Coleman Technical Industries Ltd, Chapex Nigeria Enterprise, Beacon Wire and Cable Nigeria Ltd, ZMS Power Cable Co. Ltd., Microscale Embedded Ltd, Okolison Brothers Nigeria Limited, EZZY Integrated Multiglobal Limited, Melcify Nigeria Limited, Munka Group, Apexbond electric industries limited, Domax International Limited, Melcify Nigeria Limited, Comet Star Manufacturing Company Ltd, Cutix Plc, Girisim Construction Energy And Trade Nigeria Limited, Sinitor & Co Nig Ltd, Berliac Engineering Cables, and Wire LTD.
GENCOS: Egbin Power Station, Kanji Power Station, Jebba Power Station, Kano Power Station, Dadin Kowa power station, Azura Power Station, Itobe Power Station, Sapele Power Station 1&2, Ibom Power Station, Transcorp Ughelli Power Station, Omotosho Power Plants 1&2, Omoku Power Plants 1&2, Olorunsogo Power Plants 1&2, OkpaiI Power Station, Kudenda Power Plant, Egbema Power Station, Gberegu Power Station 1&2, Ihovbor Power Station, AES Barge Power Station, Aba Power Station, AFAM Power Station (IV, V, VI), Calabar Power Station, Alaoji Power Station.
TRANSCOS: Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN)
DISCOS: Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Yola Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Enugu Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Abuja Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Jos Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Eko Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Benin Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Kano Electricity Distribution Company Plc, Sahara Energy
Arnergy, Sygnite Power and Energy Solutions, Solar Force Nigeria Ltd, Novel Power System, Arthur Energy Technology Ltd, Datacomm Express, Enerplaz Renewable Energy, Novel Power Systems, Protergia Energy, PSC Industries Limited, Rosetop Nigeria Ltd, Solar Force Nigeria Ltd, Solynta Energy Ltd, Wandel International Nigeria Ltd, APET Renewable Energy Services, Wandel International Nigeria Ltd, BETSAM Engineering, Energy Excell Systems and Solutions Ltd., Gaiasolar Nigeria Enterprises, GreenPower GP, Novonex Energy, Power Pluse Energy Company, Simbross Ideal Tech Limited.
CosmicWaterLeaks, Enfinergy, SmartHelio, PowerX Technology, GRIT Systems Engineering, BuyPower, Zola Electric, Lumos, d.light, Sun King, Quadcycle Nigeria, Daystar Power, Azuri Technologies, Bin Energy, Rensource Energy, Oando, Anergy, Utilight, Fervo Energy, Oxford Photovoltaics, Celtic Renewables, Geo Renewables, Cherry Street Energy, Enernet, Inti-Tech, Peak Clean Energy, Phosphopower Group.
Eskom. Sasol, Exxaro, AGE Technologies, MetSolar Solar Energy, NuPower Solar, The Green Way Solar South Africa, SolarAfrica Energy Pty Ltd, Solar System South Africa, Southern Energy Africa, BrightBlack Energy, Khumba Energy, New Southern Energy, Vintage Energy, Granville Energy, Bushveld Energy, Renewable Power Generation, Red Energy International, Asunim Solar South Africa (Pty) Ltd, Solar Vantage, Enervision PTY (Ltd), Solarway Suppliers, Just Energy.
Sustainable Energy – Without the Hot Air by David J C MacKay
The Corporation by Joel Bakan
- Too Big to Fail by Andrew Sorkin
- The Hemlock Cup by Bettany Hughes
- Small Is Profitable: The Hidden Economic Benefits of Making Electrical Resources the Right Size by Amory Lovins
- The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels by Alex Epstein
- Power System Economic and Market Operation by Jin Zhong
- Big Data Analytics in Future Power Systems by Ahmed F. Zobaa, Trevor J. Bihl
- BBC Radio 4 – The Bottom Line
- The Offshore Wind Podcast by GWEC
- Delta-EE: Talking New Energy
- The Energy Gang
- Berkeley Energy Lab
- The Power Podcast
- Electric Perspectives
- EPRI Unplugged
- All-Energy Exhibition and Conference Glasgow, UK.
- SOLAR KENYA (SOLAR AFRICA), Nairobi, Kenya.
- Industrial Energy Systems EURASIA (IES EURASIA), Turkey.
- KPMG Global Energy Conference, 18th edition Houston, USA.
- Solar Power China Expo, Beijing, China.
- Energy Storage World Forum, Berlin, Germany.
- International Conference on Nanomaterials for Renewable and Green Energy (ICNRGE) – Lagos, Nigeria.
- International Conference on Energy Efficient Technologies and Renewable Energy (ICEETRE) – Lagos, Nigeria.
- International Conference on Environment, Electrical Engineering and Renewable Energy (ICEEERE) – Lagos, Nigeria.
- International Conference on Power Engineering and Alternative Energy, Lagos, Nigeria.
- Electric Power Conference and Exposition, Denver.
- Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) Utility Conference, Charlotte.
- Carbon Nation
- The Fourth Revelation: Energy
- Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution
- Rafea: Solar Mama
- The Current War
- Life on the Line
- RTO Insider
- Energy Policy
- Electricity Policy
- Electric Light & Power
- Power Engineering
- Electric Perspectives