Accra, Ghana – U.S. Ambassador to Ghana Stephanie Sullivan joined Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry Michael Okyere Baafi, and other Ghanaian officials to formally inaugurate the new Air Conditioner and Refrigerator Test Laboratory at the Ghana Standards Authority (GSA) today. The U.S. government Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) funded $1.84 million for the project under the Ghana Power Compact, and the GSA contributed $45,000.
The MCC Ghana Power Compact is investing over $25 million (GH₵ 150 million) in advancing energy efficiency programs in Ghana, and the new laboratory is just one example of the U.S. government’s commitment to infrastructure investments in energy efficiency. The laboratory is the first of its kind in West Africa, will help curtail the importation of low standard and poor-quality equipment and appliances to Ghana, and will reduce power consumption and related carbon emissions.
“The stakes in the climate crisis couldn’t be higher. We need to adopt clean energy technologies and improve energy efficiency everywhere. This laboratory will put Ghana in a leadership position, helping to enforce strong efficiency standards, reducing emissions, and saving Ghanaians money,” said Ambassador Sullivan at the inaugural event. “It will help ensure high energy-consuming electrical appliances meet the Energy Commission’s standards and support Ghana’s National Appliance Standards and Labeling Systems Program.”
The Government of Ghana implemented the project through the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA). MiDA formally handed over the new Air Conditioner and Refrigerator Test Laboratory to the GSA, an agency of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, in today’s ceremony.
The building, laboratory equipment, and newly trained personnel will expand the capacity of the GSA and the Energy Commission (EC) to test the energy ratings of ductless room air-conditioning (RAC) systems and refrigerators. The EC currently relies on third-party laboratory reports generated outside of Ghana. The laboratory will ensure these high energy-consuming electrical appliances imported into Ghana meet the Minimum Energy Performance Standard (MEPS) under the EC and support Ghana’s National Appliance Standards and Labeling Systems Program.
About the Millennium Challenge Corporation
The Millennium Challenge Corporation is an independent U.S. government agency working to reduce global poverty through economic growth. Created in 2004, MCC provides time-limited grants and assistance to countries that meet rigorous standards for good governance, fighting corruption, and respecting democratic rights. More information at mcc.gov.
U.S. Ambassador Stephanie Sullivan
Remarks for the Energy Efficiency Testing Laboratory Inauguration
November 18, 2021 10:00 a.m. Ghana Standards Authority, Accra
It really is a good morning! I’m pleased to be with you here today, representing the U.S. government and the Millennium Challenge Corporation, or MCC, for this happy occasion of the inauguration of the Air Conditioner and Refrigerator Test Laboratory at the Ghana Standards Authority.
MCC is working in Ghana to increase economic growth and reduce poverty by providing a grant of $316 million dollars through the Ghana Power Compact program. It’s my first visit to the GSA, although I have driven by many times and admired the adinkra symbol.
With implementing partners at the Millennium Development Authority, or MiDA, and in partnership with entities like the Ghana Standards Authority and Energy Commission,
this part of the MCC Ghana Power Compact aims to advance energy efficiency programs to: reduce electricity demand, conserve today’s energy resources, and prepare Ghana to address the challenges of a changing global climate.
The stakes couldn’t be higher. The climate crisis poses an existential threat to every human on the planet. In the follow up to COP 26, we need to adopt clean energy technologies and improve energy efficiency everywhere. This laboratory will put Ghana in a leadership position, helping to enforce strong efficiency standards, reducing emissions, and saving Ghanaians money. It will help ensure high energy-consuming electrical appliances meet the Energy Commission’s standards and will support Ghana’s National Appliance Standards and Labeling Systems Program.
This Air Conditioner and Refrigerator Test Laboratory will expand the capacity of the Ghana Standards Authority and the Energy Commission to assess the energy performance of appliances like air conditioners and refrigerators imported to Ghana and will ensure the more efficient use of the valuable resource we call electricity.
This laboratory is only one part of the over $25 million the Ghana Power Compact has invested to advance energy efficiency programs in Ghana.
We are also working on:
- the review and upgrade of existing regulations for appliance standards and labeling to better reflect current technology;
- twenty legislative instruments, approved by the Ghana Standards Authority, Energy Commission, and Office of the Attorney General, that are awaiting review and promulgation by Parliament;
- the retrofitting of high energy-consuming appliances in Ghanaian government institutions, such as ministry buildings, universities, and hospitals, to reduce energy consumption and save government funds;
- the replacement of streetlight bulbs with more energy-efficient LED lights to reduce lifecycle costs while illuminating neighborhoods for safety and security;
- building capacity for energy auditing within Ghana’s technical universities, with three new sustainable energy-auditing service centers under development. Students will learn a trade that makes money for them and saves money for their clients, while reducing energy usage and costs; and
- a pilot school curriculum module to raise awareness about energy efficiency and conservation among Ghana’s youth.
The above list illustrates the comprehensive partnership between the United States, through MCC, and Ghana, as we work together to prepare for a more prosperous and climate-resilient future for the people of Ghana.
It’s a mark of pride that the Air Conditioner and Refrigerator Test Laboratory will be the first laboratory of its kind in West Africa and will give the Ghana Standards Authority the resource it needs to be a world-class facility for enforcing energy efficiency standards and labeling. With this laboratory, Ghana has the capacity to become a regional gateway for importing appliances that can be tested and certified here for meeting quality standards in Ghana and beyond, thus supporting the regional economic integration objectives of the Africa Continental Free trade Area.
Managing existing energy resources responsibly is an important complement to the Government of Ghana’s efforts to bring more reliable electricity to its citizens and its businesses to meet economic needs. We have to be good stewards of the resources we have today, so those resources will be available for our children, and because our children are our future. This reminds me of the African saying, “Parents look after their children when their children’s teeth fall out, and children grow up to look after their parents when their parents’ teeth fall out.”
The $316 million MCC Ghana Power Compact is the U.S. government’s contribution to a brighter, more energy efficient, and climate-resilient future for Ghana and the Ghanaian people. And this laboratory will go a long way towards improving energy efficiency in Ghana and beyond.
Thank you for your kind attention