NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya’s electricity producer has said it will
develop a 400 megawatts (MW) wind power farm in Meru County, in
eastern Kenya in a phased project to be financed by a consortium
of development financiers.
Kenya Electricity Generating
Company (KenGen) said the Meru Wind Farm Project initial phase
has a completion date of December 2017 and is expected to be
among the largest wind farms in the country.
"We have developed internal capacity to implement the wind
"We see a lot of potential in wind power," Mugo said in a
statement issued in Nairobi.
"It is likely to become a big thing in Kenya, and we are part
of a group of businesses taking leadership in wind power
development in the country," Mugo added.
He said the two financiers - France’s Development Agency (AfD)
and Germany’s Development Bank (KfW) are in the country this
week conducting a due diligence on the project.
The site of the project is near the Meru-Isiolo border.
"The lenders are on site this week to conduct a due diligence
on the project.
"The first phase of the project for a 50MW-100MW project will
be financed by concessional funding which is low cost, " Mugo
KenGen has a wind farm generating 25.5MW in Ngong’ in the
outskirts of Nairobi, making it the only producer of wind energy
in the country.
Mugo said KenGen is diversifying to cheaper sources of
energy, starting with its key geothermal projects in an effort
to reduce the more expensive diesel generated energy from the
national power grid.
KenGen said it has already put up wind masts which have been
collecting data for about three years now.
A Feasibility Study Report developed two years ago indicated
that there is enough wind resources to develop up to 400MW in
phases from the area.
The additional data will confirm the scale up to 400MW as the
company seeks to increase the production renewable energy.
KenGen in October 2014 signed a Memorandum of Understanding
with the County Government of Meru for the acquisition of land
to develop 400MW of wind power.
Meru County is said to have a geographical advantage of being
between the flatter, drier and hotter Isiolo area and the hilly,
wetter and cooler Mount Kenya region, causing a natural flow of
wind that can be tapped to produce high capacity of wind power.
The project’s site therefore sits in a wind corridor.
Investment in wind generation is driven by the need to
mitigate impact of climate change for a greener future and the
government’s commitment to lowering of electricity prices in
Kenya through renewable energy sources.
Wind generation currently constitutes one per cent of total
generation which is expected to increase to 11 per cent in line
with the government’s strategy of 5000 MW by the year 2018.
KenGen intends to use up to 1.3 billion U.S. dollars in
mainly concessional funding in the next 2-4 years in capital
expenditure on sustainable energy projects as it pushes to
increase power supply in the country.