Utilizing A Multi-Criteria Decision Making Approach To Evaluate Sustainability Of Renewable Energy Generation Sources In Uganda
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There are increasing concerns on utilization of energy resources ranging from perceived economic, technical, environmental and socio political risks in the deployment of renewable energy systems which affects the suitability and sustainability relating to usage the alternative renewable energy sources for energy generation. This research assesses the various generation sources in Uganda based on a multi criteria decision making approach to determine the most suitable energy resource alternative. This is done by utilizing Analytical Hierarchy Approach which enables a pairwise comparison of the criteria in relation to the goal, sub criteria in respect to the parent criteria and finally the energy generation sources to the various criteria to come up with a ranking of renewable energy generation sources in the order of priority. Uganda has hydro power potential of about 2,200 MW, Solar Energy potential of about 200MW, Bioenergy potential of 1650MW, Geothermal Energy of 450MW, and wind speeds ranging between 3-5 M/s. This generation potential is sufficient to meet Uganda’s current energy needs. The research shows that environmental and technical criteria are the most important criteria with respect to the goal with a score of 39.44% and 31.91% respectively followed by social political 22.56% and the least being economic criteria scoring 6.09%. This implies that prioritization of renewable energy deployment is majorly hinged on these two fundamental aspects. Weight of sub-criteria in comparison with the parent criteria reveals that the most important aspects operation and maintenance cost at 36% for economic criteria technological maturity at 38.3% for technical criteria, emission reduction at 73.1% for environmental criteria and job creation at 73.1% for socio political criteria. This implies that in renewable energy deployment, high consideration of these sub criteria should be taken compared to other sub criteria. The comparison of renewable energy generation source alternatives indicate that solar energy is the leading option with respect to economic criterion at 32.4%, hydropower as the leading option at 22.7% with respect to technical criteria, solar as the leading generation source at 22.7% with respect to environmental criterion and hydro-power as leading with 54.3% with respect to socio political criterion. The priority ranking of the renewable energy generation sources indicates that hydro power is the first alternative generation source at 27.0% followed by solar power at 22.1% and 15.9% 14.2 %, 8.1% for wind, geothermal and biomass energy respectively.