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KenGen to increase electricity generation

KenGen Company plans to increase electricity production to the national grid by over 200 Megawatts in the next two years.

The company’s CEO Rebecca Miano said under the plan, the power producer will produce an additional 165mwts by the end of 2019 and pump in another 83.3mwts by 2021 from Olkaria V power plant.

The CEO said the power would be sourced from geothermal power which was increasingly becoming the main source of electricity in the country.

Miano further said generating works at  Olkaria V power plant were at an advanced stage and plans were underway to produce geothermal power which was more clean and reliable than other renewable energy.

Speaking during a visit to the geothermal rich area, Miano said currently the country electricity capacity stood at 2,720mwts adding that KenGen had contributed 1,631Mwts while Independent Power Producers (IPP) had generated the remaining 1,089mw.

“Geothermal is leading at 40 percent followed by hydro at 35 percent while wind and solar stands at 13 and 2 percent respectively,” she said.

Miano said that over the years, KenGen had made major strides in geothermal power production noting that currently there were 310 wells drilled around Olkaria area of Naivasha.

She said the move to increase production of geothermal power would see production of thermal power reduced which would further mean a reduction in the cost of electricity for Kenyans.

Saying that Geothermal power was cheaper and readily available compared to thermal power, the CEO added that KENGEN was committed to drilling more wells to enable the country have cleaner and more electricity for Kenyan consumers.

KENGEN Chairman Joshua Choge said the company had entered into a partnership with countries in the region over more geothermal exploration where KenGen will use its expertise in the field to develop geothermal fields and capacity building for engineers in the sector.

He noted that for over six decades, KenGen had built a wealth of expertise in geothermal exploration and development through hands-on expertise where the company provided consulting services in geothermal exploration to Ethiopia, Rwanda, Djibouti, Zambia, Comoros and Sudan which was a big plus for the company.

He added by offering the consultation, the company had been able to develop an affiliation with other geothermal and geo-scientific engineers, a practice that had enabled the company keep abreast with the latest technology in geothermal sector.
By Esther Mwangi/Mary Gathoni

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