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Solution to problems on energy by rapid urbanization can be solved if key areas that escalate usage and energy efficiency is addressed



In recent years of about two, real estate development has become the main indicator of rapid urbanization and development in the urban centers especially in the Greater Accra Region with its capital Accra. This shows the potential of real estates, housing majority of the population in this region.About 30 to 35% of the current population will be found living in real estates and/or residential areas.

In the current scenario, the residential and real estate communities consume greater percentage of energy. This is evident in the appliances and the number of these appliances found in these houses. For example, houses in these areas have the following appliances in "x" numbers: air conditioners, refridgerators,microwaves, heaters for various purposes, coolers and others that consume a lot of energy. I believe a solution that will get these communities to have a separate energy point will ease pressure on the national grid. That will energy to be focused on the other population that will require less energy.This will allow energy to be maintained under manageable pressure.

The proposed solution will be an ideal solution for real estate and residential communities with respect to the following reasons.

1.The real estate and residential communities are organized settlement communities. This will ensure easy establishment and monitoring of project compared to areas with scattered settlement. It will allow for easy modification of programs and identification of faults to prevent over expenditure on the project hence, making judicious use of money. Since residents in these regions want to adopt economic ways of providing energy compared to purchasing of fuel to power home-based generators which are becoming expensive and scarce and carbon emission prone, they will contribute their resources to the establishment of a better system.

2. Residents will pool resources together to support  a long lasting solution to energy problems within their space due to their social standing. 

What actions do you propose?

A power station will be built in a secured place in the estate. The power station generates energy from the following sources:





The following points of energy generation will connect to different electrical channels that have specific gadgets in its main stream.

To elaborate on this, a new electrical connection system will be introduced in the estate. The structure of this system has it that electrical appliances in each home will have a central source of its power. So all appliances that use energy that falls within a range will have one line of connection. This one line of connection is connected to the central hub which runs through every home to the power station. So the source of energy that provides high energy per generation will be linked to the channel that requires and consumes high energy. For example, all electrical bulbs in a house will be connected to a central channel that takes its energy sources from solar; and all other houses in the region have their electrical bulb hub connected to the same central channel. The benefit from this example related to the whole concept is that the energy source produces energy within certain range and lasts within a certain range. There are appliances that when connected to that channel will make usage of that energy source efficient by making it last long than compared to connecting a refrigerator and microwave to the solar energy channel and consuming more power making it not last long because these two appliances require a lot of energy to operate.

Each home will have a digital meter that connects them to a desktop and mobile application indicating to them the amount of energy they are consuming per their device. I want to make sure that each and everyone in the estate assists to getting their neighbors to make wise use of energy and use energy efficient appliances. So a digital board will be placed at a vantage point in the estate around the entrance into the estate that shows the how each home is making efficient use of energy. A social club will be formed to ensure that any home within the estate that goes beyond a certain limit of energy usage (which will be indicated on the digital board) pays a fine to the maintenance of the system(energy project) or maintenance of road and utilities in the estate.Those that use energy efficiently will be rewarded with prices. The notion behind this is that efficient use of energy cannot be monitored properly by humans because we will compromise energy efficiency rules to enjoy the luxury of gadgets owned. So each socket in the home will have an in-built IC chip that monitors electrical efficiency of gadgets attached to it and reports it to the system which renders reports on the digital meter.Each report that is sent to the digital meter is summarized and sent to desktop and mobile app for the user to know how well they are doing. Reports from each home get to the main station for review. It will then be displayed on the digital board.

A city union will be formed to award estates that are doing well in their implementation of green ecosystem and energy efficiency at the end of 6 months to ensure that people accept and implement these policies.

Three of the energy sources will be able to be implemented because there are solutions to them in the world. However, the implementation for the water/hydro will apply a lot physics in this regard making it new in our country. Highly raised reservoirs will be erectedwith mass capacity for water. Medium-sized Pipes with small turbines in them arranged at reasonable intervals will be constructed in a sinusoidal shape. Based on potential energy possessed by the water in the reservoir, it will be released through the pipes therefore transforming into kinetic energy which will drive the turbines to produce energy. The shape of the pipes are in sinusoidal shapes in order for the crests and troughs to serve as points of potential and kinetic energy gains for the water as it moves through the pipes. 


 Our definition and target of real estates in Accra refers to new housing communities that are gated in the city. In Accra, most of these areas are called residential areas which may deviate a little from the actual definition with respect to urban planning. In these gated communities, there are instances where a company builds houses for people to rent or buy and another where people are allowed to buy the land and build a structure of their choices on them. People who belong to these communities belong to the wealthy class in society. A wall or fence is built around the confines of the estate with a main entrance and guards.

There are no rivers or water bodies in these gated communities to make for production of hydro-energy by the dam method. The method we adopt is to build a large capacity high tower reservoir with turbine retrofitted pipes that connects to it. There will also be small turbines fitted into pipe and sewer sources that connect to the community and homes. Our large capacity high tower reservoir will have large pipes with turbines retrofitted into them. The pipes will have a sinusoidal and elliptical design. The reason for this design is to ensure that high velocity running water in these pipes from the reservoir continue to move in the loop that will be created with less dependency on powerful pumps which would have been introduced into the system. The loop consists of two parts- the sinusoidal loop and the elliptical loop. The sinusoidal loop connects to the reservoir directly at a point where water will move into it at a high potential speed. The sinusoidal design will ensure the moving water attains kinetic and potential energy points throughout to the elliptical loop. In the center of the elliptical loop is a powerful artificial pump that adds to the centrifugal force created by the elliptical design to pull water out of the sinusoidal loop. This force, increases the push of the water in the elliptical loop to continue at high velocity then enters into the reservoir at a greater speed to continue the cyclic flow of water through the pipes which contains the retrofitted turbines. The second option of installing small turbines into the pipe and sewer sources that connects to the community and homes will follow the initial design of town planners, no new design there will be just turbines in the system. We will consult companies and countries to assist us in this regard.

Who will take these actions?

1.GREDA(Ghana Real Estate Development Agency): In order for the rules and regulations to be instituted amongst real estates and residential areas for setting up this project, a recognized authority needs to be identified and consulted.GREDA is the right authority to consult about this development, so that all upcoming and existing real estates will adopt this solution. They will also be the main body to promoting this develpoment. The implementation of this project with respect to the laws around it will be an enforcement law that will attract fees if breached.

2.Reals Estates that will be consulted. Real estates and residential areas that will be conslted on this will be direct beneficials of this project.

3. Negawatt Challenge Team

4.Andrews N.A Lartey : Idea creation, design modification and implementation.

5.Mr. Mock K Nsiah --- project implementation and strategist.

We are targeting trassacco and NTHC developers in the country for the pilot phase of our project and use that as a case study for deployment among others players in the gated real estate sector. We will go into agreement with developers and the individual owners of the houses in the estates. For the developers to assist us in the implementation of the plan and the individuals to agree to benefit from this and pay their due course to the successful implementation of the project since they will be bearing most of the cost in this project. We will be contacting international and local bodies to assist in the project: Australia Government; European Commission; German Federal Ministry For The Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety; Ghana Ministry Of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation; and the Environmental Protection Agency.


Where will these actions be taken?

This action will take place in the regions of Accra, more or less the Greater Accra Region. Accra is the  the capital and largets city of Ghana, with an estimated urban population of 2.27 million as of 2012. Accra is furthermore the anchor of a larger metropolitan area, the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area (GAMA), which is inhabited by about 4 million people, making it the second largest metropolitan conglomeration in Ghana by population. It is booming in recent years with a lot of real estate establishment.

How much will emissions be reduced or sequestered vs. business as usual levels?

 The project is hoping to effect a 40% reduction in emission in the country when it is full blown. Energy crisis in Accra has caused a lot of homes and businesses to buy generators compared to when there was manageable energy crisis. This has resulted in more homes generators which is powered by fuel. Carbon emissions are increasing. The pilot stage of this project will not lead to a 40% reduction in carbon emissions that is caused by usage of generators. The 40% energy reduction will be effective when this project is adopted by 85% of gated real estate communities and 30% of the rest of the communities outside gated communities. This will mean in the first 10 years of our implementation carbon energy emission reduction will be by approximation, 11.8%.


What are other key benefits?

*The project plan has hardware and software solution to make access to information on energy usage easy.

*The project plan has a model that affects individuals to monitor and use energy efficienctly. It even makes a group of individuals stay in check of each other.

*The project plan combines both appliance and human elements to make realizing energy efficient goals achievable and sustainable for a long period of time.

*The project plan eliminates the use of fuel dependent generators to produce energy hence reduction in CO2 emissions.

* The project promises a reduction on the national grid if most communities adopt it in the future. This will result in more energy supplied to the industries to rekindle the industrial revolution.

* Foreign investors in the industrial sector will benefit by not lossing greatly due to properly managed energy in the country.

*Communities are going to have their own source of energy to reduce power crises.

What are the proposal’s costs?

The project is going to be expensive to implement. It will require skilled engineers and thinkers to design and implement it. Maintenance complications will be project after it has been designed and gone through some time of implementation.

We are approximating an amount of $83,000. We do not have the exact estimates of the project and will require a financial team to assist us look at that.



Time line

In the first few years, we will do market and feasibility studies before getting third parties (governmental and private sector) to be involved to implement the project. This will be between 3 to 5 years of start of project. Between 5 to 10 years we will be working on gathering of logistics and manufacturing of elements for project. We will be conducting environmental studies during each stage. Between 10 to 50 years we will be building the project with our partner developers as part of the pilot phase. We are hoping to extend the project to other real estate communities between 30 to 50 years of the pilot phase. We are looking at working along with research institutions like MIT and Carnegie Mellon University and DIY countries like Germany and United States Of America. We are adopting the Life Cycle Cost Analysis for Lands and Buildings October 2005 approach by Stanford University on this project since we are new to a large project like this.

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