310MW Lake Turkana Wind Power plant was launched
On 19th July, 2019, the Lake Turkana Wind Power (LTWP) plant, which was constructed in Loiyangalani district, Marsabit County, officially started operations. The 438km Loiyangalani-Suswa transmission line which connects the wind farm to the national grid has been opened.
The plant is comprising 365 wind turbines (850KW each, with total installed capacity of 310MW). The electricity generated will be bought at a fixed price by Kenya Power & Lighting Company Ltd (KPLC) over a 20-year period and supplied to various locations through the national grid. This increased electricity supply by approximately 13%. In addition to reducing reliance on thermal generated electricity, stable securing of clean, low cost, renewable energy was realized.
According to Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta, who attended the launching and opening ceremony, “For LTWP project, an international consortium including African Development Bank (AfDB) paid $700 million. This is the most expensive private investment ever in Kenya. Today’s launching the largest wind power plant in Africa will bring a further level of improvement to the continent, and save fuel charge of 8.5 billion Kenyan shillings in the first eight months.” He praised the region’s first wind power plant.
Over the past few years, Kenya has made steady progress in investing in environmentally friendly energy. Currently, about 70% of the nation’s electricity comes from renewable sources such as hydropower and geothermal, and according to “Renewables 2018 Global Status Report”, Kenya is ranked ninth globally in geothermal power generating capacity. The country also has an ambitious goal of achieving 100% green energy by 2020.