Electricity costs drop on 210MW injection


Kenya Power workers in Nyali, Mombasa. The additional energy is part of the 280MW geothermal project that KenGen is implementing in Olkaria. PHOTO | FILE

The cost of electricity has further dropped this month, moving closer to the government target of cutting power prices by a fifth.

The decline follows the injection of 210 megawatts of geothermal power into the national grid, with 140 megawatts having added to the grid in late July and the second tranche of 70 megawatts on September 16.

Electricity prices are expected to drop by about 7.8 per cent for homes that consume about 50 kilowatt hours (kWh) this month, having dropped by 12 per cent last month.

Middle class households that use 200 units of power monthly expect to see their bills drop by 4.8 per cent after a 8.5 per cent fall in September.

Deputy President William Ruto had promised that electricity prices would go down by about 20 per cent from this month on reduced reliance on expensive thermal power following the injection of the additional geothermal power to the grid.

READ: Geothermal cuts electricity prices below Ruto’s target

In the two months to end of October, those consuming 50 units would see a drop of 19 per cent on their power bills while homes doing more 200 kWh will be down about 12.7 per cent.

Data from the Energy Regulatory Commission shows fuel cost adjustment, which is linked to amount of power generated from expensive fuel-driven generators, dropped to Sh4.79 per kWh for bills to be settled at the end of the month from Sh5.71 the previous month and Sh7.22 in August.

The foreign exchange fluctuation adjustment cost, however, increased to Sh0.23 per kWh from Sh0.17 kWh last month.

A wobbly shilling and heavy dependence on diesel-powered generators to produce electricity, due to low water levels in the hydro-electric dams, have been blamed for the rise in fuel surcharge and forex adjustment costs.

Households consuming 200kWh of electricity this month will, for instance, pay about Sh4,086 down from Sh4,296 last month and Sh4,685 in August. Those consuming less than 50 units will pay Sh646.93, down from Sh702.14 last month and Sh800.15 in August.

The additional energy is part of the ambitious 280 megawatt geothermal project that KenGen is implementing in Olkaria.