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Kenya Power, Lamu farm sign 20-year wind electricity deal

wind

A crane installs a windmill at a wind farm. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Summary

  • The project is owned by Baharini Wind Power Company which is backed by Belgium’s Elicio Company and Kenya’s Kenwind Holdings Limited.
  • The initial plan includes setting up 38 turbines which will produce 90 megawatt (MW). The project is planned on a 3,206-acre land at Baharini Village, about 40 kilometres from the new Kililana.
  • Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) project.

Kenya Power #ticker:KQ has signed a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with a Lamu-based wind power company.

The project is owned by Baharini Wind Power Company which is backed by Belgium’s Elicio Company and Kenya’s Kenwind Holdings Limited.

The initial plan includes setting up 38 turbines which will produce 90 megawatt (MW). The project is planned on a 3,206-acre land at Baharini Village, about 40 kilometres from the new Kililana Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) project.

“We are happy that finally, the PPA has been issued by Kenya Power. That's enough indication that the project is viable,” said Susan Nandwa, Baharini’s power project director.

“The project is crucial since it will bring about regional transformation bearing in mind that the power generated will be supplied to the Lapsset project in Kililana.”

The project has delayed by over eight years. Ms Nandwa said the project's tariff per kilowatt-hour (kWh) has been lowered from the initial 12 US cents to seven US cents.

She noted that the power generation plant is still viable with the reduced charges to the national electricity distributor.

Ms Nandwa said the company has initiated a resettlement action plan as it prepares to launch construction. She said all the affected land owners will receive fair compensation.

An estimated 600 farmers are expected to be removed to pave way for the project.

The resettlement is being conducted by consultants from SGS Kenya, an inspection, verification, testing and certification company.

The process is expected to be concluded in four months after which other procedures will follow before compensation of the affected land owners.

Kenya has been deepening supply of power from cheaper sources such as wind and geothermal steam. This is expected to translate to reduced power bills for consumers and reduced pollution.

The government has ambitions of using electricity exclusively from clean sources like wind, solar, hydro and geothermal in the next few years.

Increased investments in renewable energy by private companies add to the large number of projects undertaken by the State-owned KenGen.

The more expensive emergency power producers, which use diesel generators, are expected to play a lesser role in the country’s energy mix going forward.

Besides costing more, they have also been criticised for polluting the environment.