General Electric Brings Distributed Power to Africa; Diesel Power in the Works

General Electric Company (NYSE: GE  ) unveiled its new Distributed Power business for Africa today, a key element of its larger commitment as part of the Power Africa initiative to help bring 5,000 MW of new electricity to Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, and Tanzania.

In today's press release, General Electric reiterated its corporate commitment to "more reliable, local energy supplies that can promote greater economic development and security in urban and rural areas." With its new Distributed Power business, GE expects to include diesel technology in its electricity recipe for success.

"In areas of Africa where traditional grid service is poor or does not exist, we are seeing more customers seeking to install distributed power technologies that can help ensure that homes and businesses have more reliable supplies of electricity," said Lorraine Bolsinger, president and CEO of GE's Distributed Power, in the press release. "GE's Distributed Power is committed to helping customers throughout Africa use more of their own domestic energy resources, which in turn enhances the economic security of the region for future generations." GE's Distributed Power business focuses on power generation at or near the point of use, on or off the grid.

The company is currently testing 2.6 MW diesel engines.. If all goes as planned, the engine will ship to Nigeria later this year, where General Electric already has a 40-year history and over 400 employees.

While the company will start with diesel, its press release also mentions solar, wind, and natural gas as other sources for its 5,000 MW capacity addition.

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