Inauguration ceremony of a solar powered drinking water system in Abuja, Nigeria.

PVWater Internationala pioneering joint venture between SC Sustainable Concepts from Erfurt, Germany, and KXN Nigeria, has installeda solar electricity and water disinfection system providing water and electricity for the local population in Dutsen Alhaji, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nigeria. The system will deliverup to 20,000 litres/day clean water as well as electricity of about 5  KWh/day. Strategic planning and financing of the system was carried out by Sustainable Concepts and KXN, while operation will be implemented by PVWater. The water disinfection system was developed by the German company Autarcon in Kassel, Germany,and uses solar electricity to pump up groundwater through a stack of electrodes where solar electricity produces a small amount of chlorine to kill all the bacteria present in the water. The system has an intelligent payment system allowing customers to pay with aspecial payment card for the water they need as well as the electricity they use.  Autarcon has installed more than 50 systemsin10 countries around the world, and now for the first time in Nigeria.

The Federal Minister of State for Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, mentioned in his opening speech that electricity and clean drinking water are vital for the future of the country, and welcomed the initiative of PVWater in establishing this new technology which is particularly suitable for Nigeria. “We have plenty of sunshine, and we certainly need autonomous systems to supply electricity and drinking water particularly to rural communities, who would otherwise be unconnected. Having a sustainable solution for these two important areas puts us in a position to improve our Health Care system and increase the standard of living of our people.”

Mr.Anthony Ighodaro, Director of PVWater International, thanked the Minister of State for Health for giving PVWater International the opportunity to establish their innovative system on the premises of the Primary Health Centre (PHC) where its services would be available to everyone in the community. He pointed out that there are over 12,000 Primary Health Centresin Nigeria, often without reliable electricity and clean drinking water, and that it is the goal of the company to establish systems on as many sites as economically possible.

Dr .Hubert Aulich, Director of PVWater International and Managing Director of Sustainable Concepts, remarked that the present system is privately financed, and needs to compete with drinking water that does not have the same high quality standards as water from PVWater. Provided this Pilot system demonstrates that the business model is economically viable, the company intends to install five more systems in the FCT.

PVWater already has a BSc. student from the University of Applied Sciences, Jena,Germany, working on site at Dutsen Alhaji and, furthermore, it is the intention of PVWater and its German parent company Sustainable Concepts to work closely with Nigerian universities to establish a student exchange programme with German Universities, to train young students in Photovoltaics and Water Technology and to foster cooperation agreements. These initiatives help ensure that this new technology is maintained and supported locally.