Implementing a Project with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)

GMC Certificate Achievers & REI Alumni Spotlight Alhaji Cham, National Water and Electricity Company

Alhaji ChamThe REI Accredited Center (REI) is pleased to focus on the achievements of those who have attended REI courses and attained the internationally recognized Galileo Master Certificate to further their careers in the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency sectors. The REI, which works with the United Nations Environment Programme and major universities to promote best practice in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, this month is delighted to speak with Alhaji Cham, who has used the knowledge gained on REI Courses to successfully win a project with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO),to develop a 600KW Wind Turbine Project in The Gambia. Alhaji attended the REI Renewable Energy Management and Finance and Wind Power training courses at the REI Academy.

1. What is your experience in the field and why did you choose to attend REI courses?

My expertise in the field of Renewable Energy ranges from project proposal writing to design, preparation, evaluation of tenders and commissioning for renewable energy projects. We have just commissioned a 60KW solar Hybrid system and are about to implement and commission a 600KW Wind Energy Power Project. I also have a vast knowledge in HOMER, an energy modelling software used for the simulation of Renewable Energy Projects, for designing and analyzing hybrid power systems.

Over the years, I have implemented and commissioned several electricity power projects including solar street lighting systems.  Other engagements I am involved in include promoting awareness on issues associated with energy efficiency and loss reduction in the transmission and distribution network.

The Renewable Energy Institute (REI) is an internationally recognised institution highly recommended for professional development of energy experts. Since my first participation in the courses organised by the Centre, I keep attending mostly because of the structure of the courses. The lectures are easy to understand, detailed and give vital in-depth knowledge of the subject matter, which significantly helps in my career path.The REI team members are always supportive and ensure that participants make the best use of their training.

2. What are the skills that you gained on REI courses and how did your studies help to secure the UNIDO project?

The Renewable Energy Management and Finance course I attended at the REI impacted greatly on my ability to successfully develop theUNIDO/GEF Wind Turbine Power project I won recently. The financial and economic analysis of the project was done thanks to the knowledge gained from the course. The Wind Power course I attended helped in selecting the right place for the proposed wind turbine, avoiding wind obstacles. The knowledge that I gained from the Wind Power course will also be useful during the tender preparation, evaluation and installation and commissioning period of the project.

3. Please expand further on the Wind Turbine project you are undertaking in the Gambia and what you hope to achieve with the project.

The objective of the demonstration projects, besides reducing the cost of generating electricity, is to generate National Renewable Energy case studies and best practices that have high replication potential in The Gambia. Experiences gained in the area of Wind Energy Technology and lessons learnt from the demonstration projects will be useful in the design of a National scaling-up strategy, for further Wind Energy development in The Gambia. It will further increase power production capacities, without increasing the fuel consumption. It will help by gathering valuable data for further wind energy development in The Gambia. It will also create the platform to have trained personnel in wind technology and consequently ensure that technicians, responsible for operation and maintenance of the wind turbine, have the appropriate knowledge to perform the associated tasks and ensure the continued operation of the wind turbine.

The project also aims to promote awareness on the use of an alternative form of increased Generation Capacity using available resources and reduce GHG emissions.

REI Training Course Participants