The Menengai Geothermal Power plant in Kenya which is US$500m project currently under construction is anticipated to be complete by July this year; this is according to the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group.
AfDB’s Environment and Climate Manager Kurt Lonsway confirmed the news and said that the ongoing project is expected to cover the need of over 500,000 Kenyan households, 300,000 small businesses and 1000GW for other businesses and industries.
“The mega project which is located within the Eastern Sector of the African Rift Valley about 180km North West of Nairobi has a potential of producing up to 1600MW,” Mr. Lonsway said during the AfDB Annual Meetings on Climate Change and Energy being held in Zambia.
He further pointed out that AfDB will assist in developing the steam field for generation capacity of up to 400MW in the first phase and that the development will allow a substantial increase in the provision of clean, reliable and affordable electricity to Kenyan citizens.
This is a very good initiative as it will assist in the avoiding of close to 540,000 tons of CO₂ per annum. Easy access to modern energy will help improve health and education opportunities, mainly for women and girls.
During the AfDB Annual Meeting, Kenya was highly commended as one of the few countries working hard to ensure renewable energy is applicable in its system. Kenya is among six countries in the whole of Africa that have commenced major initiatives to utilize solar and geothermal power, which as a result has led to over 10 GW of capacity contracted.
The Menengai geothermal power plant which is in line with Kenya’s green growth vision will play a major role in realizing Kenya’s speedily increasing demand for power and it is projected to generate approximately 150 MW of electricity per year.