Eritrea Turns To The Sun

National Economy

The population of the State of Eritrea is approximately 3.67 million people[1]. In 2020, only 52.2 % of the people in this country located in the Horn of Africa had access to electricity[2].

In 2022, Eritrea’s economy was ranked 167th  in gross domestic product (GDP) in the world[3]. The country’s economy is based on the export[4] of gold, copper ore, zinc ore, silver, and non-knit men’s shirts.

Environmental Policies

In 2016, Eritrea signed the Paris Climate Agreement[5], committing to an unconditional 39.2%  reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, compared to business as usual levels.

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, the state-owned Eritrean Electricity Company used oil (97.8 %) and renewable energy (2.2%)  to generate electricity in the country[6]. Solar is the only type of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Eritrea.

The following is the only recent renewable energy project in Eritrea:

  • 30 MW Solar Project – The African Development Fund is assisting the government of Eritrea develop a solar project at a site approximate 20 miles southeast of the nation’s capital, Asmara.


Eritrea has significant undeveloped renewable energy resources, including solar, biomass, onshore wind, and offshore wind. The nation’s renewable energy resource potential could easily provide low-coast, reliable electricity to everyone in Eritrea.

Eritrea imports refined petroleum for transportation and power generation. In 2020, Eritrea spent[7] U.S. $7.32 Million for imported refined petroleum.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, resulting in the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, and South Korea placing embargos on Russian exports. As a result, the international price for crude oil increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

The volatile fuel price for coal, oil, or natural gas make fossil fueled power plants an economic impossibility for Eritrea. Solar is now providing low-cost, green electricity to the people of Eritrea.

Jack Kerfoot

Website – “Our Energy Conundrum”


Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on numerous energy related topics.



[1] Eritrea’s Population (2023) –  January 26, 2023,

[2] World Bank, Access To Electricity (% Population) – Eritrea

[3] Gross Domestic Product By Country 2022 – Worldometer

[4] The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) – Eritrea

[5] Carbon Brief – “Paris 2015: Tracking Country Pledges”

[6] Our World In Data, Eritrea: Energy Country Profile by Hanna Ritchie and Max Roser

[7] The Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC) – Eritrea Imports

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