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The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, (BMBF), funded Renewable Energy Development Project on “High Technology Laboratory Construction for Production of Biogas, and Up-to-date Efficient Cooking Tool Mechanisms Implementation” has been launched at the University of Lomé, in Togo.

The pilot project seeks to identify new research activities in the field of Renewable Energies in the West Africa sub-Region with the ultimate goal of finding a headway in solving the energy deficiency problems that are faced by countries in the West Africa Sub-Region.

Deutsches Biomasseforschungszentrum, DBFZ, an experienced – German reputable bioenergy firm, and WASCAL, mandated to provide quality climate change solutions through research and capacity building in West Africa will be leading the project in Germany and West Africa respectively ably  supported by the University of Lomé, Togo.

The Vice Chancellor of the University Professor Koffi Akpagana, made an affirmation for continuity and development.

“To our German and WASCAL partners, I would like to reassure them that we firmly believe that the growth and development of our country cannot be envisaged without a massive investment in renewable energies. The University of Lomé will be a major player in this area, and we are ready to put all the necessary means to achieve this”. He said.

The Executive Director of WASCAL, Dr. Moumini Savadogo, thanked BMBF for their excellent and unflinching cooperation and support to WASCAL. He also cited the manifestation of the cooperation through different embassies of Germany in WASCAL’s  11 member countries.

Also speaking at the event, the Director of WASCAL Graduate Studies Programme at the University of Lomé, Togo., Professor Komi Agboka, expressed gratitude to the partners for the initiative:

“Togo has, through WASCAL, and in collaboration with the German Biomass Research Centre, substantially benefited from the technical and financial support from the BMBF in the implementation of the project called “Development of research and technology demonstration capacities for the use of the potential of Biomass in Togo-TOGOLAB”, which is the first axis of the “Programme for the development of renewable energies in Togo”, and I want to thank Dr. Christoph Rovekamp,  as well my predecessor, Professor Kouami Kokou and his team, and all the experts here for the successes chalked so far.” He said.

The lab will also be a training centre and an educational exchange medium for young African scientists and the German counterpart where knowledge and experience would be shared in renewable energy

The ceremony, which took place at the WASCAL Graduate Studies Centre in Lomé, was attended by dignitaries like His Excellency the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, Mr. Matthias Veltin and representatives from BMBF, headed by the Honorable Parliamentary State Secretary, Thomas Rachel and Dr. Christoph Rovekamp who joined in virtually, amongst other decision-makers and other key stakeholders.

In Togo, access to energy is less than 10% in rural areas. Much of this energy is usually in the form of traditional biomass, consisting of charcoal, firewood, agricultural residues and manure. It is evident that increasing the effective and efficient use of biomass for energy purposes can also become a tool for development and poverty reduction.