Tucson, AZ Dec. 18, 1999 SolarQuest® iNet News Service
Mihidhoir Sagaf is the Minister of Energy and Water Resources of the Comoros. He was the Director-General of Public Works (1997-98) and chief of the team, SECMO-OI Consultancy Firm, in the Comoros (1996). He is a civil engineer who graduated from Ecole Nationale Superieure Des Travaus Publics in Yamoussoukro, Cote d’Ivoire. On December 13, 1999, at the US-Africa Energy Ministers Conference, he was interviewed by Mavis Donkor of the iNet news team about the energy situation in his country.
What are some of the energy concerns of the Comoros?
There are three Islands that make up the Comoros. In the grand Comoros Island there are energy resources that have not being explored. There is water under the Island and the Karthala Volcano both of which can be used to generate electricity. There are two sources of energy to explore, hydroelectric and geothermal.
How can the US help with these energy issues?
In conjunction with the Karthala Volcano to generate electricity, his mission is to find US companies to do business with on this issue. The electric energy currently available is insufficient to supply the whole island with continuous electricity.
One of the criteria companies look for to invest in a country is stability. Do you think your country is stable enough to convince US companies to invest in it?
Yes! The Comoros is very stable.
What is the current source of electricity?
From electric motors. My country need renewable energy to meet the demand of electricity. In conclusion I hope to develop the energy resources of the Comoros.
Will you be interested to speak with a company specializing in using hydro and geothermal sources to generate electricity?
Yes! I will be interested in speaking to company like that.
After speaking with the Honorable Mihidhoir Sagaf, I contacted Ron Swenson (the leader of the News team), about my interview with the minister. Ron introduced me to Daniel N. Schochet and Lucien Bronicki of ORMAT.
Interview with Lucien Bronicki of ORMAT
How efficient is electricity generated from hydro and geothermal sources?
Systems run by hot water and geothermal energy run at low pressure and temperature. A combination of the vast amount of water in the region and the heat from the volcano can be used to generate energy. Boiling water and steam coming out of the ground can be used to generate electricity. There are ten power plants in the United States that use this technology.
What resources will these countries need?
A stable economy, money, and the will of government to implement the project. Money is needed to explore these resources.
I interviewed the Honorable Mihidhoir Sagaf of the Comoros who expressed interest in possibly doing business with a company like yours. Will you be interested in meeting with him?
Definitely! Bring him over.
Ron and I introduced the Honorable Mihidhoir Sagaf to ORMAT. ORMAT explained its technology to the Honorable Mihidhoir Sagaf and they came to the conclusion that ORMAT will need more information on the geothermal resources available in the Comoros such as traveling to the Comoros to explore the land. A decision will then be made as to how this project can be implemented, the costs, etc.