The construction of US $207m wind power project in Lamu, Kenya is set to commence soon. This is after a Kenyan High Court allowed Belgian firm Electrawinds to begin construction after dismissing an application by a rival firm, which had derailed the project.
Last year in May, US-based company Cordison International Company filed an application claiming that Lamu County Government was favoring Kenwind Ltd with the allocation of land and investment of the wind energy project at Baharini Ward in Mpeketoni Lamu; but Judge James Olola has dismissed the application clearing the legal hurdle.
Even though wind power contributes to a small amount of Kenya’s electrical power, its influence on the energy production in Kenya is increasing steadily. Kenya’s major wind farm, The Ngong Hills Wind Farm, was constructed at a cost of US $15m and produces 5.1MW.
The Lamu wind project in Baharini Village, near the town of Mpeketoni, is expected to a produce 90MW (120,000 hp) of electrical power in the Mpeketoni Division at the Kenyan coast in Lamu County. The planned wind station will sit on 3,200 acres (5.0 sq mi) of land and will consist of 38 wind turbines. The power generated will be evacuated via a new 323 kilometers (201 mi), 220 kV power line from Lamu to Rabai, where it will be integrated into the national grid for use across the country.
Electrawinds, will be collaborating with Kenwind Holdings on this project that is partly being financed by the International Finance Corporation, a branch of the World Bank.
The commission date for construction is expected to be in 2020 and will contribute to Kenya’s goal of having 2036MW of wind power, this is 9% of the country’s total capacity, by the year 2030.
It will be Kenya’s largest single private investment in the country’s history which will eliminate Kenya’s thermal generating plants and save the country US $153.6 per year on imported fuel.