NAIROBI Kenya, Jul 9 – The Energy Regulatory Commission has launched the country’s first energy portal to provide energy information to persons interested in investing in the energy sector.
Speaking during the launch on Tuesday, Energy Regulatory Commission Director General Kaburu Mwirichia said it will reduce the time spent by investors seeking to venture into Kenya’s renewable energy sub-sector.
“The energy portal is expected to reduce the time delays occasioned by barriers and bureaucracies that have impeded new investments by up to 50 percent over the next one year,” he said.
Mwirichia noted that the portal will provide simple access to relevant information about administrative entry requirements and procedures for operating a power plant based on renewable energy.
The portal is set to trigger more private investment in reliable and environmentally responsible energy products.
It will also create a more competitive environment for the private sector to thrive by privatizing traditional sources and suppliers of energy.
“They (investors) will also access the relevant market information that includes sources of financing, energy and capacity demand as well as location of renewable energy resources,” he stated.
Mwirichia revealed that the portal is designed to be a one-stop-shop aimed at reducing the time and costs of developing renewable energy projects.
The new energy portal will provide guidance for permitting any type of renewable energy project from a 100MW wind farm to an off-grid solar home system.
“It will walk you through the permits and licenses needed and provide details guidance on exactly what information is needed to successfully apply for each,” he emphasized.
The director also noted that the country had huge potential and sufficient renewable energy resources to enhance energy security, lower cost of energy and increase reliability.
“This can also be used to generate income and create employment,” he noted.
“The country will also make substantial foreign exchange savings by reducing dependence on imported fuels and its attendant price volatility and mitigate climate change.”
In Kenya, renewable energy generated electricity from hydropower, geothermal, wind and cogeneration contributes about 70 percent of the overall power mix while the balance is generated from non-renewable energy sources.
The portal also aims to; improve transparency on the regulatory and licensing processes, enhance coordination between government agencies that issue approvals, licenses and permits and reduce licensing transaction costs and time.
It will also improve the overall understanding of the policy, legal and institutional framework governing power projects.
To access information about energy, one will be required to visit the portal site at www.renewableenergy.go.ke.