, NAIROBI, Kenya May 27 – The Meru County Government is exploring mini-hydro power plants with an estimated capacity of over 100 Megawatts(MW) in a bid to lower costs of doing business in the county.
Meru Governor Peter Munya says the county has 25 permanent rivers which it plans to exploit to generate electricity.
He says preliminary studies show that mini-hydro sites can be developed on the rivers with each site having the potential of generating two to five megawatts of electricity.
He says the county is seeking partners to help develop these projects with a view to exporting it the national grid and supply to local users including businesses.
Tapping this natural resource is part of Meru County’s ambitious plan to position itself as a preferred investment destination.
Besides power generation, the county government is also keen on partnering with investors to set up a manufacturing hub for renewable energy equipment.
“Globally, the market for renewable energy technologies is estimated at $300 billion. We plan to establish a factory to make solar, wind and biogas equipment in Meru. This will not only benefit investors in Meru County but also save the country lots of money spent importing such equipment,” explained Munya.
He added that Meru is strategically positioned within the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia (LAPSSET) corridor hence the need to invest heavily in infrastructure. “Besides being an energy hub, we are also positioning the county to be a logistics centre given the county’s strategic location on the Kenyan map.”
The county is planning a second investment conference in late June as it steps up efforts to woo investors in energy, agriculture, infrastructure and tourism sectors.
“The upcoming conference (next month) will focus on showcasing specific investor-ready projects as well as initiatives by the county government to create the right environment for investors in the four sectors we are focusing on,” said Munya.