Menengai Geothermal Power Project in Kenya Breaks Ground

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The Deputy President (DP), Rigathi Gachagua has led the groundbreaking for the construction of the Menengai Geothermal Power Project in Nakuru County, Kenya. The project targets adding 35 Megawatt (MW) to the national grid upon completion.

“This will contribute to lowering the cost of energy and accelerate manufacturing, digital economy, among other benefits,” stated the DP. The Geothermal Power Project is also aimed at attaining a 100 per cent transition to green energy.

The Menengai complex is the second large-scale geothermal field under development in Kenya after Olkaria. The Menengai project was announced at COP27 in November 2022, to fast-track green investment projects worth $3.99 billion.

Additionally, financing agreements for the project were signed in December 2022 with the African Development Bank (AfDB). Moreover, the Eastern and Southern African Trade & Development Bank, and Finnfund equally participated in signing the agreement.

Significance of the Menengai Geothermal Power Project Towards the Transition to green energy

GDC reported the Menengai project is being developed by three Independent Power Producers (IPP), generating 35MW each.

The first IPP, Sosian Menengai Geothermal Power, is scheduled to start operations in June 2023. Moreover, Globeleq is the second IPP at the project site and is implementing the project through Globeleq Geothermal Kenya Limited. Globeleq’s geothermal power plant will increase the Menengai project’s total capacity to 70MW.

Also Read: Drilling works at Akiira geothermal site in Rift Valley, Kenya set to resume

State-owned GDC will supply steam to the project for conversion to electricity under a 25-year project implementation and steam supply agreement. Once completed, electricity will be sold to Kenya Power, under a power purchase agreement (PPA) for the same timeframe.

Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir praised the de-risking concept supported by the Kenyan government through GDC. The latter has already drilled 43 wells in Menengai, assuming the initial risks allied with geothermal project expansion.