Daniel Arap Moi-linked Sosian Energy starts supplying power to national grid


Sosian Menengai Geothermal employees lead by their Director Kigen Moi at the 35MW plant commissioned on June 8, 2023, by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua. PHOTO | BONIFACE MWANGI | NMG

Sosian Energy, which is linked to the family of the late President Daniel arap Moi, has supplied 22 megawatts of power to the national grid ahead of the full commissioning of its plant, boosting Kenya’s push to fully run on renewable power.

Kigen Moi, a director at Sosian Energy, said on, Thursday, the independent power producer (IPP) started early commissioning of three of its five units this week as the firm nears completion of the 35-megawatt geothermal plant.

Sosian Energy is now the first of three IPPs tapped by the State in 2014 to build geothermal plants, each of 35 megawatts on a public-private partnership.

The other two are Ormat Technologies and Quantum Power, which has since sold its licence to Globeleq.

The new plant in Menengai, Nakuru, will boost Kenya’s bid to fully go green and phase out the expensive and dirty thermal generators.

“We started the early commissioning this week and we are already pumping 18 megawatts and by Saturday we will do 22 megawatts to the national grid,” Mr Kigen told the Business Daily.

Kenya is ramping up efforts to tap more of the vast geothermal potential in the Rift Valley in addition to sourcing wind and solar energy in a bid to fully run on clean energy.

Geothermal energy accounted for the biggest share of the electricity generated at 49.8 percent in the three months to March, followed by wind at 18 percent, hydro at 14 percent and thermal (13.7 percent).

Sosian Energy sells the electricity to Kenya Power at Sh4.9 per kilowatt-hour, lower than the Sh5.3 per kilowatt-hour from Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen). Other IPPs have priced their power as high as Sh195 per unit.

The plant whose cost is estimated at $79.15million (Sh11.07 billion at current exchange rates) is set to be completed by August, as Sosian Energy races ahead of the UK giant energy developer Globeleq and Ormat Technologies in the geothermal power generation, behind KenGen.

Construction of the plants had been delayed as the IPPs struggled to secure financing for the ventures for the costly plants.

Upon completion, the 35-Megawatt Sosian Energy plant will undergo a 30-day reliability test that will pave the way for a commercial operation date under a 25-year power supply deal to Kenya Power.

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