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93% Hike in Kenya's Green Energy from Garissa Solar Plant

Kenya's new 50 megawatt (MW) solar plant in Garissa has raised the share of renewable energy to the grid to 93 %, setting the stage for cheap and easy accessible electricity.

The 54.6 megawatt (MW) plant, the biggest in East and Central Africa and situated 15 kilometres from Garissa Town, was commissioned by President Uhuru Kenyatta, further restraining the dependence on expensive thermal power.
 
The Government is up scaling electricity generation and investing in Kenya’s power grid to keep up with increasing demand and reduce frequent blackouts. But Kenya’s solar energy is still small compared to other sources.
 
“The 50MW solar plant has hiked the share of renewable energy in our energy mix to more than 90 %,” the Ministry of Energy said on Twitter.
 
Most of Kenya’s electricity is produced by renewable sources, with geothermal ranked the biggest source of power to the grid with hydroelectricity and wind following.
 
The new solar plant, backed by increased geothermal and hydropower generation—which has received a kick from the ongoing rains—has cut the share of expensive thermal power to the grid at seven % from 19 % in April.
 
Kenya ranks 40th worldwide in EY’s renewable energy country attractiveness index, which was issued in November.
 
The injection of the Sh13 billion Chinese loan- funded solar power to the national grid comes months after Kenya increased its share of cheaper wind power.
 
Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Corporation (REREC), formerly Rural Electrification Authority (REA), owns the plant. The 310MW Turkana Wind Farm, which was switched on in October last year, accounted for 13.9 percent of Kenya’s generation mix, up from 9.8 percent in June, say the electricity regulator.
 
Solar power cost about Sh8 per kilowatt hour matching the wholesale cost off wind, and lower than thermal that goes for above Sh20. The decreased reliance of thermal power will reflect on electricity bills, pulled down by lower fuel cost charge.
Source : www.ogafnz.com
Posted On: 12/17/2019 12:00:00 AM

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