KenGen, Power Africa partnership to increase geothermal


A geothermal well at Menengai Crater. PHOTO | SULEIMAN MBATIAH

The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) has partnered with Power Africa-Kenya to increase electricity production from geothermal sources.

Through the partnership, the US government-led initiative is expected to provide technical expertise to KenGen in the areas of development, management and financial structuring to attract private investments into geothermal projects.

The US is the global leader in geothermal power production. The partnership comes at a time when KenGen is planning to develop 140 megawatts of geothermal electricity at Olkaria VI through a joint venture arrangement, different from its traditional way of funding projects through development financial institutions.

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“Through this partnership, we hope to increase available generation capacity, develop new project structures and optimal frameworks to support efficient financing and project development,” said KenGen managing director Albert Mugo.

Installed capacity

KenGen aims to increase its installed power generation capacity by 2,500 megawatts in the next 10 years.

This includes 720 megawatts to be delivered by 2020. The company’s total generation capacity currently stands at about 1,600 megawatts.

Kenya is among six African countries that are to benefit from the multibillion-dollar Power Africa initiative launched by US President Barack Obama in 2013.

Power Africa targets to double electricity access in sub-Saharan Africa, where it is estimated that more than 600 million people live in darkness.