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KenGen set to break ground for geothermal plant today




A section of the Olkaria geothermal plant. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Kenya is set to break ground for a geothermal plant Tuesday in the latest effort to raise its stock of green energy.

The Kenya Electricity Generating Company #ticker:KEGN is expected to break ground for the 83MW Olkaria 1 Unit 6 Geothermal power plant in Naivasha, a project to be completed by 2021.

The electricity generator said the addition of the plant will push up its geothermal capacity which currently stands at 533.8MW following the completion of Olkaria 1, 4 and five plants which are also due for expansion. Geothermal is considered a stable source of energy producing about 43 per cent of Kenya’s the electricity.

KenGen, which has an installed energy capacity of 1,631MW, expects to generate another 2,029MW from geothermal by 2028. Another 90MW will be sourced from hydro power, 410MW from wind and 40MW of solar energy is expected to push the firm’s capacity to 4,200MW.

Kenya, whose total installed capacity stands at about 2500MW, was in June ranked ninth globally in geothermal power generating capacity, by the Renewables Global Status 2018 report.

The country topped in Africa with 700 megawatts (MW), retaining its place compared to last year. The US has the largest geothermal generating capacity with 2,500MW followed by the Philippines at1,900 MW.