Solar energySolar energy is also a viable option, with average horizontal irradiation reaching 6.0 kWh/m2/day in some regions. Global irradiance in the country ranges from 2,000 to 2,400 kWh/ m2. Owing to its high cost, this technology could be reserved for specific applications, such as pumping for general water supply or for powering telecommunication systems as well as for low-energy applications, such as low-consumption lamps, radios and televisions, telephone recharging and small computing equipment.Wind energyThe potential for wind energy is present, with some sites having average wind speeds in excess of 5 m/s. However, wind power use is still largely unexplored in the country.Biomass energyTraditional biomass use for heating and lighting is still prevalent. According to studies, the biomass intensity of the Central African Republic is currently sustainable. No studies have been conducted as to possible non-traditional biomass use in the country. Over 50% of the country is covered with some form of forest, of which approximately 10% is currently being used as an energy resource.Geothermal energyNo study has currently been undertaken to determine the geothermal potential of the Republic.HydropowerThe role of renewable energy technologies is most likely to progress with the electrification of the main towns in the country by the exploitation of hydropower. Currently the Mbali River, a tributary of the Oubangui in the Boali region north-east of Bangui, is considered to have impressive hydro-electric potential. This region is the main centre for hydropower production in the country. Some areas that are considered priorities for small or micro hydro development include: Bocaranga, Paoua, Baboua, Bossangoa, Ndélé, Sibut, Bangassou, Bria, Kembe, Bambari, Bouar, Carnot, Berbérati, Kaga- Bandoro and Mbaîki (ENERCA, 2009). Major potential large-hydropower developments include the 300 MW Palambo project, 65 km North of Bangui, initially proposed as part of a wider project to improve water flow into Lake Chad. However, the necessary investment for this project is approximately US$ 450 million, and hence further project development has been slow since the initial proposal.