Kenya set to start building 140 MW geothermal power plant

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, May 23, 2016
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Kenya's power utility, KenGen, has said it is set to start the construction of a 140 megawatts (MW) geothermal power plant in Olkaria, northwest of the capital Nairobi before 2016.

Managing Director of the Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen), Albert Mugo, told an investors conference in Nairobi on Monday that the project, dubbed Olkaria V, was currently in the tendering process which comes to an end in June.

"We expect to sign the contract in October with the contractor so that construction can begin by the end of year," Mugo said.

Mugo said the power plant project was expected to take 30 months and that KenGen had secured about 410 million U.S. dollars for it.

He said that the firm hoped to connect 720 MW of new power to the national grid in the next four years.

Mugo also lured the investors to invest more in the firm, saying its "dividend scheme" is "one of the most competitive, reliable and sustainable in the country."

"With the country's power demand expected to cross the 4,000 MW mark by 2020, success in the future is dependent on early planning and that is why we are asking shareholders to take up their rights at this time so that we can have enough capital for expansion," he said.

KenGen, which is 70 percent owned by the government, has a current installed capacity of 1617 MW, out of which 509 MW is from geothermal sources.

In December last year, KenGen fully put into use the 280 MW Olkaria geothermal power plant, one of the world's largest single geothermal power plants.

Figures show Kenya's current installed generation capacity is produced through geothermal sources at 46.4 percent, hydro (38.1 percent), thermal (14.8 percent), and wind (0.4 percent). Endit

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