KenGen articulates vision to accelerate renewables deployment in Kenya
The utility has a project pipeline that includes geothermal, wind, solar and hydro projects which are expected to be commissioned by year-end.
The CEO of the Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen), Kenya’s largest electricity utility, Ms Rebecca Miano, says the company is accelerating deployment of renewable energy in Kenya to combat the adverse effects of climate change.
Addressing delegates during a panel discussion under the theme, Accelerating Clean Technology Innovation and Deployment at the COP26 World Leaders Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, Miano said KenGen is committed to the fight against climate change and is supporting the Government of Kenya’s ambition to achieve 100 percent utilization of renewable energy by 2030.
“Our future project pipeline, which is mostly green, includes geothermal, wind, solar and some hydro. The projects will be implemented in phases with the first expected to be commissioned by the end of this year,” said Miano.
Key dignitaries who were in attendance during the panel discussion included, President Uhuru Kenyatta, United States of America President, Joe Biden, UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, among other Presidents and world leaders including The Duke of Cambridge Prince William and Microsoft co-founder and billionaire Philanthropist, Bill Gates.
The KenGen CEO reaffirmed the company’s commitment to the Caring for Climate Working Group of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) in a bid to refocus the company’s business towards sustainability.
KenGen joined UNGC’s Business Ambition for 1.5°C Campaign, saying it is banking its future on green, affordable and accessible energy, including geothermal, hydro, wind, and solar.
The KenGen MD and CEO, who is a Board Member of the Global Compact Network Kenya (GCNK), said the company is enhancing its partnership with other key actors to make clean technologies the most affordable, attractive and accessible option for users.
“There is an urgent need to focus on renewable energy to meet our energy needs. AfDB estimates Africa’s electricity access rate at about 40% with over 645 million people with no access to electricity,” said Miano.
She said KenGen had also explored several opportunities with Non-State Actors including financial Markets and has over the years raised funds for green energy projects through various financial instruments such as infrastructure bonds and Rights Issue.
“We also work with technology providers for innovative clean energy solutions including sizing of power plants, geothermal reservoir modelling and automation of operations and maintenance of our power plants through Internet of things,” said Miano.
She said KenGen had made inroads in working with other countries to help fast-track the adoption of green energy as a way of accelerating sustainable development while at the same time combating climate change.
“I am happy to confirm that we are already sharing our expertise and skills in accelerating clean energy innovation deployment, more so in geothermal development,” Miano said adding, “Indeed, in Africa we have a golden chance to go green early enough when the opportunity for growth is still rife. Through partnerships, which is SDG 17, we make the world habitat a better place for present and future generations.”
KenGen PLC is East Africa’s largest electricity producer and is among the top 10 geothermal energy producers in the world.