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Source of Energy

Current sources of energy
Of the energy generated in Uganda, traditionally 93 per cent has come from fuel wood, 6 per cent from imported petroleum and 1 per cent from electricity. 6-7 per cent of households are electrified. Only 1-2 % of the rural households is 1-2 use electricity. The rural households depend on fuel wood for their energy supply .

There are various social, economic, environmental and technical issues with biofuel production and use, which have been discussed in the popular media and scientific journals. These include:

  • The effect of moderating oil prices,
  • The “food vs fuel” debate
  • Poverty reduction potential
  • Carbon emissions levels
  • Sustainable bio fuel production
  • Deforestation and soil erosion
  • Loss of biodiversity
  • Impact on water resources
  • As well as energy balance and efficiency.

The International Resource Panel, which provides independent scientific assessments and expert advice on a variety of resource-related themes, assessed the issues relating to bio fuel use.

Hydro Electricity
The use of hydro electricity in Uganda is limited to a small portion of the population. The consumers are mainly in the urban areas.  Over 80% of the rural population still use paraffin lanterns for lighting and firewood for cooking. Most organisations in Uganda  still relying on backup generators for operation of their businesses.
The bulk hydroelectricity generated by the Nalubaale Power Station at Owens Dam at the outlet of Lake Victoria and the beginning of Victoria Nile is rated at 180 Megawatts’ (MW).

In the 1990s a second dam and hydroelectric facility (Kiira or Kiyira Power Station) was added about 1 km from the first and fed by additional flow from the lake through a new channel. The facility is rated at 200 MW, although the plan was to run it in combination with the Nalubaale to produce 300 MW combined, and higher amount at peak times.

Peak demand (evenings) is estimated to be about 380 MW and daytime demand about 260 MW. Thus, the two plants were anticipated to cover daytime demand but still fall short of peak demand during evening hours.

Charcoal and Fuel Wood
Most Ugandans rely on wood fuel (fire wood and charcoal) as their primary source of energy for heating, cooking and lighting.  This has a negative impact on the country trees without replanting  have been cut down for firewood.

Uganda imports all its petroleum products and imports come primarily through Kenya (85%) and Tanzania (15%) via trucks. The main oil route is from the port of Mombasa via pipe to Eldoret, Kenya, Eldoret in Western Kenya and then by truck across the border into Uganda. Plans are underway for Uganda to produce its own fuel for domestic consumption.

Uganda has plenty of sunshine giving solar radiation of about 4-5 kWh/m2/day. This level of isolation is quite favourable solar technology applications. Solar energy applications in Uganda include solar photovoltaic (PV), water heating, cooling and crop drying. This form of energy has not been fully exploited.

Wind energy
This form of energy includes utility scale wind farms ,wind power plants, small residential wind generators, large commercial wind turbines, large commercial wind turbine components, towers and structures for large commercial wind turbines, towers and structures for small residential wind generators.
 Source 🙁

 Natural gas.
This can be used to heat water for steam turbines; it can also be used to run gas engines, and can also be burned to produce hot combustion gases that pass directly through a turbine, spinning the blades of the turbine to generate power.

Nuclear power.
A controlled process called nuclear fission is used to produce steam by heating water. This steam spins a steam turbine thereby producing electricity power

This includes; solid waste, wood, and agricultural waste. These are some other energy sources for producing power. These are combusted to create steam like in conventional steam-electric plants

Geothermal power.
This arises from heat energy buried underneath the earth’s surface. This heats underground water to steam. This steam is then tapped for use at steam-turbine plants.
Source:  (

Uganda has abundant energy resources, especially renewable resources, yet there is widespread energy poverty throughout the country.

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