Power Africa technical assistance is helping our African government partners connect more homes and businesses to electricity, especially in rural and underserved areas. Through direct collaboration with energy utilities, ministries, and agencies, we are developing data-driven tools to accelerate and monitor energy access initiatives.
In Senegal, Power Africa is collaborating with the national power utility, Senelec, to create a tool to monitor electrification efforts in support of the country’s universal electricity access plan (Plan d’Accès Universel à l’Electricité, or PAU). Through PAU, the Government of Senegal aims to provide all citizens with access to affordable electricity by 2025.
Senelec already had a wealth of accurate data but needed an easier way to visualize the thousands of data points related to electricity access, grid expansion, and off-grid power solutions.
Using Power BI, a data visualization tool, Power Africa and Senelec developed a bespoke, user-friendly dashboard tool to visualize electrification rates in communities nationwide, monitor and evaluate electrification projects, as well as provide Senelec engineers and leaders with up-to-date reports.
The dashboard enables Senelec to see how electrification projects within each locality are performing, identify projects that are delayed, and make data-driven informed decisions on where to expand electrification.
As part of the process, Power Africa worked with Senelec to streamline how its data are organized. Together, we structured the data into a model that enables Senelec to continue to integrate new data more easily into the database, and for the updated data to be shown as visualizations on the dashboard.
By integrating geospatial information system (GIS) technology into the dashboard, Senelec can view their thousands of electrification data points across specific locations. GIS enables Senelec to perform location-based analysis to prioritize electrification efforts in line with their universal access goals.
To set up this aspect of the dashboard, Power Africa and Senelec worked together to ensure all the necessary geospatial data was included in the dashboard’s database. We created interactive GIS maps linking the geospatial data for each locality with its electrification data from the database and utilizing the Esri ArcGIS Maps for Power BI visualization tool.
After creating the dashboard, Senelec and Power Africa conducted a week-long training session for Senelec staff.
“The training has allowed us to understand how to maintain the dashboard in the long term and beyond, update it as needed, and develop other applications utilizing the software we learned. This dashboard is an excellent showcase for Senelec in the implementation of universal access in Senegal,” Ndèye Ami Drame, Acting Head of Distribution Planning Division, Planning Department, General Studies Directorate.
The Power of Dashboards in the Region
Across West Africa, Power Africa has helped create digital dashboards for Côte d’Ivoire’s Compagnie Ivoirienne d’Electricité, Benin’s Direction Générale des Ressources Energétiques, Ghana’s Ministry of Energy, Senegal’s Senelec, and Togo’s Compagnie Energie Electrique du Togo. In the coming months, we will share more stories about how Power Africa continues to scale its work applying digital tools to drive electricity access.