Somalia Solar Replacing Diesel Power Plants

Country Overview

The East African country of the Federal Republic of Somalia is bordered by Kenya, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Gulf of Aden, and the Indian Ocean. The population of Somalia is approximately 18.8 million people.

In 2022, Somalia’s economy was ranked 155th in gross domestic product (GDP) in the world. The country’s economy is based on the export of sheep, goats, gold, cattle, other oily seeds, and insect resins.

Environmental Policies

In 2016, Somalia signed the Paris Climate Agreement, committing to a number of projects relating to adaptation and mitigation, aimed at sustainable land management, water resource management, reducing risk from natural disasters, and sustainable charcoal production.

Power Generation Capabilities

In 2021, 49.3% of the people in Somalia had access to electricity. In 2021, the Somali Energy Company used refined petroleum (90.2%) and renewable energy (9.9%) to generate electricity in the country. Solar and wind are the dominant types of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Somalia.

The following are recent renewable energy projects in Somalia:

  • 5 MW Solar Project – In November 2023, the Puntland Solar project was commissioned at a site approximately 550 miles north-northeast of the nation’s capital, Mogadishu. The utility scale solar project was financed by the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD).
  • 8 MW Solar + 4.8 MW Hours Energy Storage Project – In February 2023, Norwegian company Kube Energy commenced work on a solar plus battery energy storage system (BESS) project at a site 150 miles northwest of Mogadishu.
  • Mini-Grid Solar Program – In February 2023, United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and Federal Government of Somalia launched the Somalia project of the Africa Minigrids Program to increase access to electricity across the nation.


Somalia imports refined petroleum for transportation and power generation. In 2021, Somalia imported U.S. $51.7 Million of refined petroleum.

On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the crude oil and natural gas prices increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.

Somalia has significant undeveloped renewable energy resources, including solar, biomass, onshore wind, and offshore wind. Somalia is turning to reliable, low-cost solar power to replace costly diesel generators.

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, podcast, and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on a diverse range of energy issues.


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