The successful Solar Hot Water 2018 Workshop that was held on 15th and 16th February 2018 brought together stakeholders in the solar hot water industry drawn from both the private and public sector including solar technicians and contractors, plumbers, renewable energy consultants, energy training firms, energy research bodies, the hospitality industry, government institutions, manufacturers, and the real estate industry to discuss pertinent matters concerning the sector.
There has been and continues to be, an urgent need to focus attention on Solar Energy and specifically on Solar Hot Water, and review what has happened in the past five years towards assessing the impact of the awareness created and the uptake of solar hot water solutions.
Experts with the technical competence required, facilitated the workshop including Mr. Eric Hawkins from Thermaltricity International, Mr. Nickson Bukachi from the Energy Regulatory Authority, and Eng. Chris Mbori of Eenovators Ltd. The workshop had very engaging discussions and practical installation sessions.
The Energy (Solar Water Heating) Regulations 2012 requiring all premises with hot water requirements exceeding 100 litres per day to have solar water heating panels, has generated in depth dialogue on how to regulate, improve and capitalize on the industry requirement, and towards sharing knowledge for sustainable next steps. The workshop generated five major resolutions that were unanimously passed, and will be embraced by industry players and key stakeholders in the country.
The workshop’s success drew from the partnership with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC), The Strathmore Energy Resource Centre (SERC), The Association of Energy Professionals East Africa (AEPEA), and Sunstream Solar Energy Limited that provided a conducive environment that yielded a strategic way forward.
These 5 resolutions passed by the Solar Hot Water Workshop 2018 include the resolve to:
- Entreat upon the Ministry of Energy to engage all consultative processes within its power and as governed by law to commune a stakeholders’ forum involving the holistic range of solar hot water practitioners and associated stakeholders both in formal and non-formal institutions towards a collaborative process to discuss and propose solutions for improvement of the solar hot water industry performance
- Urge the government and all members, partners, and players in the solar hot water services sector to invest in training, education, and awareness about solar hot water to ensure best practice is undertaken in the industry, and that an aspiration towards increased consumption is adopted to meet the country’s targets
- Call for a comprehensive review of the Solar Hot Water Regulations 2012 with a view to enhancement for the inclusion of aspects on quality control, technical competencies, standards institution and audits; and for the inclusion of non-compliance consequences
- Challenge all solar hot water practitioners and other stakeholders from the public and private sector to invest in research and development, to ensure there is constant contribution to the body of knowledge in the solar hot water sector, and that solar hot water solution are customized for local consumption to ensure maximum performance and
- Urge the entire solar hot water fraternity to innovate around financing options exist and explore financial models for adoption towards embracing financial inclusion, and providing solar hot water options for the currently unserved, and underserved markets in the region towards overall increased uptake of solar hot water systems.
These resolutions need to be fully embraced and support provided with public private partnership projects implemented to ensure end to end solar hot water implementation with local and global technologies, installation options, cost effective alternative materials, and troubleshooting techniques. The full Solar Hot Water Workshop 2018 report is available on www.eenovators.com