NAIVASHA, Kenya, Dec 4 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has broken ground the construction of the Olkaria 1 Unit 6 as the country gears towards hitting 100 per cent use of green energy by 2020.
The unit is expected to produce about 83MW of power.
Speaking at Olkaria on Tuesday, President Kenyatta said the government is committed to offering reliable, adequate and affordable power to its citizens as it will promote the growth of industries in the country.
He said energy is important in the realisation of the Big Four Agenda, which is his administration’s priority.
“Since 2013, about 1060MW have been added to the national grid. So far 6.9 million Kenyans are connected to power and all public primary schools connected to power,” President Kenyatta said.
The Olkaria 1 unit 6 will be constructed by a Japanese company Marubeni Corporation which is its first project in Africa.
Following its completion, the project will see Kenya propel higher in the world’s ranking as the largest geothermal power producer.
“Kenya currently uses 90 per cent of green energy. Plans to reach a 100 per cent of green energy use are on course,” he added.
At the end of the last financial year, June 2017, KenGen had installed capacity of 1,631MW.
The company’s leading energy type is hydro at 818MW followed by geothermal at 534MW, thermal at 253.5MW and wind at 25.5MW.
“Globally, countries are shifting to usage of renewable sources of energy owing to the small amount of greenhouse gases they release into the atmosphere, Geothermal energy is considered a stable source of energy,” said Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter.
Kenya’s total installed capacity currently stands at 2, 370MW.
In the next three months, the country will add an additional 364MW to the national grid from the 310MW Lake Turkana Wind Power project and 54MW Garrisa Solar Plant.