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Electricity in Rwanda in 2021

Global Ranking: #163
58.0% #58 Low-carbon electricity
7.46 watts #205 Generation / person
282.80 gCO2eq/kWh #63 Carbon Intensity

In the year 2021, Rwanda's electricity consumption stood at 30 watts per person, significantly lower than the global average of 410 watts per person. Although the nation is leveraging low-carbon energy sources for its power generation, the overall electricity production falls immensely short of the global scale. This deficit in electricity generation may hold back essential developmental and industrial progress due to inadequate power supply. Moreover, the lack of adequate electricity could result in reliance on environmentally destructive biomass fuels for cooking and heating, contributing to deforestation and indoor air pollution.


For Rwanda to boost its low-carbon electricity generation, there are a few successful strategies from around the globe it could consider. Countries like India and Brazil, with similar developmental profiles to Rwanda, have significantly invested in wind and solar power, generating 93 TWh and 94 TWh, and 120 TWh and 49 TWh respectively. For countries with geographical challenges, nuclear energy has turned out to be a viable option. For instance, densely populated South Korea and Japan turned to nuclear energy, generating 172 TWh and 77 TWh respectively. Emulating such models, Rwanda could dramatically increase its investment in wind and solar technologies, while exploring the feasibility of nuclear power generation on a small scale.


Over the past few decades, Rwanda has primarily focused on hydropower for its low-carbon electricity generation. Notwithstanding the minor setbacks experienced in 1996 and 1999 with a decline of 0.1 TWh in both years, the country maintained a steady output from its hydroelectric power plants. It is noticeable that through the late 2000s and 2010s, the generation rate remained constant with incremental increases observed in 2014 and 2015. Recently, however, there was a slight decline in 2021, an indicator that the country needs to diversify its energy sources for a more reliable and resilient electricity supply system.

Electricity Imports and Exports

Balance of Trade

Data Sources

For the years 1980 to 1989 the data source is EIA.
For the years 1990 to 1999 the data sources are EIA and Enerdata (imports/exports).
For the years 2000 to 2021 the data source is Ember.
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