A German couple, one of the first buyers of a beach front house in Fumba Town, wants to start a solar business here. Engineer Ronny Paul, 44, produces custom made solar systems.
There seems to be good news on the solar front: a first photovoltaic project is planned for Bambi in the heart of the island. That would be indeed good news. One wonders actually why solar in Africa has been taking so long.
You don’t want to wait, so you are planning your own solar system?
I am planning a show unit with wind and solar energy for private houses, so that other owners can actually see what is possible. I sell solar systems in Germany, now I want to offer the same for any house type and size in Fumba Town.
What are the costs?
It depends on consumption and unit size.
Let’s say for a three-bedroom...
If you use an average of 10,000 kilowatt hours per year; your electricity costs in Zanzibar are about $120 per month.
How much do I need to invest to go solar?
A relatively large solar system costs about $12,000; for a smaller house a system of $3000 – $5000 can be sufficient. In both cases, in ten years your investment will have paid off!
What’s the most important first step to a solar future? Preferably electricity companies open their grid for the alternative energy. Then your house system can switch automatically between grid and solar. You can even monitor your consumption with smart home devices from abroad.
And a system with batteries?
With the latest storage technology it makes sense, and you are completely self-sufficient. We will bring the latest equipment from Germany to start installing this year.
And wind energy?
Very small wind turbines can be installed in the garden.
Like in yours next to the sea...
Yes, we will try that.
How do you like living in Fumba?
We come here around four times per year. Initially we planned the house as an investment and have built a pool in only four months.
Christine: Now we really like it here, it’s less stressful and a wonderful holiday spot
Ronny’s solar business
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