The Independent Power Producers (IPPs) of the Menengai Geothermal Project is set to host a ground-breaking ceremony for the first of the three power plants that are planned for construction in March 2018; this is according to Kenya’s Geothermal Development Company (GDC).
Quantam East Africa Power Limited will be breaking ground for the first 35MW power plant; the Sosian Menengai Geothermal Power Limited (SMGPL) will follow later.
This will be a key milestone for GDC as the project is hot on the heels of the government’s assurance of its support for Menengai.
In a statement, GDC managing director and CEO Eng. Johnson P. Ole Nchoe assured staff that with accelerated project timelines and delivery, he is confident that by March 2018, the project’s first IPP will enter the market.
“Both IPPs already have their letters of support and we trust that we will have banks on board to provide letters of credit. In addition, steam gathering system is 90% complete and by March all should be fully complete,” he said.
Menengai Geothermal Project
The three IPPs licensed by GDC include Orpower 22 Limited, Sosian Menengai Geothermal Power Limited (SMGPL) and Quantam East Africa Power Limited.
They will generate and supply power to the national grid from the Menengai Geothermal Project. The companies also plan to invest US $210m in the construction of the power plants.
The project is going to give 500,000 households and 300,000 businesses access to low-cost power under the government’s 5,000MW initiative. Kenya Electricity Transmission Company Ltd (Ketraco) has already set up a 132kV substation that will transmit 105MW of power from the power plants.
Under the arrangement, GDC takes care of upfront risks, and invitations to private sector players to construct, own and operate the plants.