NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen)
has said it will increase power output at its Ngong wind power
farm by 20.4MW, following the construction of 24 new turbines to
be commissioned in October.
KenKen CEO Albert Mugo told
journalists during an inspection tour of the firm, located near
the capital city, that the addition will bring the power unit’s
total capacity to 25.5MW.
"The company is fast-tracking its renewable energy
projects, comprising wind and geothermal as part of
government’s target of adding 5,000MW to the national grid
by September 2016," Mugo said.
KenGen is also actively involved in the exploration and
tapping of the geothermal steam, supplying the bulk of the 130
megawatts of geothermal generated electricity to the national
KenGen’s shift to renewable energy is based on the
government’s strategic plans to invest in cheaper and greener
renewable energy resources to make electricity cheaper, and act
as a catalyst for the industrialization and improvement of
living standards as the country races to achieve middle income
status by 2030.
Kenya currently depends heavily on the hydrogenated
electricity that supplies an estimated 67 percent of the
national electricity needs, yet this supply is affected
dramatically in case of rainfall failure, plunging the country
into expensive power rationing.
KenGen commenced the expansion of the Ngong Wind plant in
March 2013 under two separate contracts for the design, supply,
installation, testing and commissioning of wind turbines, each
The first contract financed by Spain involves the
installation of 16 Spanish-made Gamesa turbines.
Kenya to add 140 MW of
power in August
NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya will connect an additional 140 Megawatts of
power into the electricity grid in August, a senior government
official said on Sunday.
Energy Cabinet secretary Davis Chirchir told a news
conference in Nairobi that the electricity will be generated
from geothermal power.
"This is part of the programme to add 5,000 MW to the
national grid in the next 36 months," Chirchir said at a launch
of a project to boost Kenya’s electricity transmission lines.
Kenya has an installed capacity of about 1600 MW. Geothermal
is one of the cheapest sources of power.
"Kenya will be able to deliver power at seven cent per
kilowatt hour compared to the current average of 19 cents
per kWh. which will help reduce the cost of power," he
The east African nation had requested 800 million
U.S.dollars loan facility from the African Development Bank
to expand its electricity transmission network.
"The bank’s board is expected to approve the first
tranche of 160 million dollars in September," he said.
The cabinet secretary added that Kenya plans to connect at
least 3,000 primary schools to the national grid in the current
financial year. An additional 3,000 schools will source
electricity from solar sources.
"This will ensure the success of the planned school
laptop project," Chirchir said. Kenya Power Managing
Director Ben Chumo said his organization has set aside 11
million dollars to upgrade its electricity network.
Kenya has set aside 24 million dollars in the current
financial year to subsidize connections to the national
Construction of new 300 MW
Lake Turkana Wind Power Project
by Chrispinus Omar and Ronald
Njoroge NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- The
construction of Kenya’s 300 MW wind power project will begin in
Ju8ne 2014, the chairman has said.
Lake Turkana Wind Power Project (LTWP) on Monday secured 623
million euro loan, making it the largest private investment in
Lake Turkana Wind Power Chairman Carlo Van Wageningen
told journalists in Nairobi that the entire project will
take 32 months to complete.
"However, the first 100 MW will be connected to the
national grid in 27 months after construction begins,"
Wageningen said during the ceremony of signing financing
agreements in Nairobi.
As the largest single wind farm in sub-Saharan Africa the
Lake Turkana scheme is expected to generate around 20 percent of
Kenya’s power and provide 300 MW of reliable, low cost wind
power to the Kenya national grid.
The project located in remote northern Kenya will be the
largest ever private investment in Kenya and include 365 wind
turbines, each capable of generating 850 KW, as well as
associated power and road connections.
The project has attracted financial support from European
Investment Bank (EIB), the Standard Bank of South Africa,
Nedbank, FMO, Proparco, East African Development Bank (EADB),
PTA Bank, EKF, Triodos and DEG; all who were led by the African
Development Bank (AfDB).
"A consortium of banks has agreed to extend loans
amounting to 498 million Euros towards the project,"
"The debt has a ten year repayment period with a two year
The chairman said that the wind farm will cover 40,000
acres in north eastern Kenya.
"The project will comprise of 365 wind turbines each with
a capacity of 850 KW," he said.
The LTWP project has been under private development since
2005 and that is in itself a remarkable testimony to the
stability and soundness of the Kenyan electricity sector as well
as the environment for Independent Power Producers.
"We are delighted that this project will move forward
with the continued support of Kenyan government, Kenya
Power, KETRACO the African Development Bank, and all the
other partners who have since come on board," Wageningen
The signing of the financing agreements signifies the
completion of the project’s financing subject to completing the
remaining conditions precedent after which construction will
commence this year and begin producing power in early 2016,
adding 300MW to the national power grid.
Energy Principal Secretary Joseph Njoroge said that the Lake
Turkana Wind Power project is the single largest wind power
project to be constructed in Africa.
"It also represents the largest private investment in
Kenya’s history," he said.
Njoroge said that Kenya aims to reduce the cost of power
from an average of 0.20 U.S. dollars to 10 cents in the next
The PS added that the wind farm will provide
approximately 20 percent of Kenya’s current installed
capacity electricity at the rate of 0.752 euros per Kwh.
"It will also save the country at least 150 million U.S.
dollars annually on fuel imports used to generate
electricity," he said.
LTWP is a key deliverable under the government’s commitment
to scaling up electricity generation to 5,000 MW and to provide
cost effective renewable power to the Kenyan consumer.
It is also a Vision 2030 flagship project and will be a
transformative project in terms for the development impact to
the Northern arid areas of Kenya, the electricity sector, and to
Kenya as a whole.
It is also expect to generate up to 150 million dollars/ year
in foreign currency savings to Kenya through fuel displacement
The project’s debt raising is led by the AfDB, as mandated
lead arranger, the Standard Bank of South Africa and Nedbank
Limited as co-arrangers, EIB, FMO, Proparco, East African
Development Bank, PTA Bank, EKF, Triodos and DEG.
The government of the Netherlands has also provided a grant
of 10 million euros and the European Union, a subsidized
facility through the EU Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund a
further 25 million euros.
Vision 2030 Delivery Secretariat Acting Director General
Gituro Wainaina said that the wind farm is a key deliverable
under Kenya’s commitment to scaling up electricity
generation to 5,000 Mw in the next 40 months.
He said that the demand for electricity in Kenya is very
"We have in the pipeline a number of flagship projects
that require cheap and reliable sources of energy," Wainaina
European Investment Bank Head of project Finance in Africa
Monique Koning said her bank will provide 200 million euros of
debt towards the project.
"We will also take an additional 25 million euros of
preferred equity share in the project to close a financing
gap not covered by current or new investors," Koning said.
Netherlands Ambassador to Kenya Joost Reintnjes said that
his government has provided a grant of ten million Euros
towards the project.
African Development Bank Regional Director Gabriel Negatu
said that the project is an example of how developmental
financial institutions can work together with commercial banks
to bridge Africa’s energy gap.
Negatu said that his firm has also provided a 20 million
Euros partial risk guarantee for the construction of a
transmission line that will evacuate power from the wind farm.
"As the lead arrangers, we are proud to have played the
key role of convening all the partners together to reach
this historic financial close," Negatu said.
"Africa Development Bank has further provided a Partial
Risk Guarantee to GoK to protect the project against the
risk of delays in the construction of the transmission line,
thereby providing additional comfort to prospective
Kenya Electricity Transmission Company Managing Director Joel
Kiilu said that they have received a 110 million Euro loan from
the Spanish government to construct a 428 km transmission line
that will distribute the power generated by the wind power
"Construction will begin in April and will complete in two
years," he said.