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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Vegpro Group horticultural firm opens first biogas plant in Africa

NAIVASHA (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s horticultural firm Vegpro Group has opened a 2.2 megawatts biogas plant, the first of its kind in Africa.

The plant, which sits in Naivasha, about 90 km northwest of capital Nairobi, is worth 6.5 million U.S. dollars and is owned by Vegpro Group and a British investor.
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Johnnie McMillan, Managing Director of Tropical Power Company which is running the plant, said they would be using 60 percent of baby corns to produce the power, and 50,000 tonnes of vegetable residue per year to produce methane gas which would be used to run two engines and in turn produce 2.2 megawatts of power.

"This is the first ever biogas plant in Africa and we plan to sell half of the power to Kenya Power and the rest to neighbouring farms," he said.

He said the company expected to get solid and liquid fertilizers, around 35,000 tonnes per year, from the plant and supply them back to the farms planting the baby corns, noting that this meant the farmers would see a 20 percent reduction in the use of synthetic fertilizer.

The plant Operations Director Mike Nolan said the power plant would supply up to 10,000 homes once after the Power Purchase Agreement was signed and power lines to the national grid connected.

"Now the only challenge is lack of qualified personnel and enough vegetable residue," he said.

 

Biogas plant in Naivasha | Coastweek

NAIVASHA (Xinhua) -- An operator works at the 2.2 mega watts biogas plant in Naivasha. Owned by Vegpro Group and a British investor, the plant, the first of its kind in the continent has been undergoing construction for the last six months. XINHUA PHOTO - ROBERT MANYARA

 

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Nolan said the company has also finished a negotiation with Kenya Power about the construction of a solar plant near the biogas plant which would produce 10 megawatts to the national grid once completed.

             

 

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