Kenya Power Aims To Save Sh2 Billion through Solar Power

Posted on : Thursday , 29th February 2024

Kenya Power says that a donor-funded initiative aimed at retrofitting expensive fuel off-grid stations with solar panels will save customers Sh2 billion annually.


The stations would consume gasoline solely at night, according to Joseph Siror, managing director of the company, and will run on solar power during the day.


According to Dr. Siror's statement earlier this week, "consumers will pay less for electricity because they will pay less for fuel needed to run the off-grid stations."


The goal of the program is to replace the diesel-powered off-grid stations with solar-powered photovoltaic systems.


Thirty-two of the 56 off-grid stations are solar mini grids while the remaining 26 are thermal. Kenya Power manages and maintains these facilities. All customers' electricity bills include the cost of purchasing diesel to power these thermal units.


In order to make generation cleaner and more affordable, the utility plans to refit 18 of the 30 thermal units with solar power.


As part of a transition to renewable energy, the firm claims that it has already replaced four fuel-powered off-grid stations with solar power.


The project is being funded by Sh1.7 billion that Kenya Power got from the Agence Francaise de Developpement.


According to the utility, the project will cost a total of €33 million (Sh5.69 billion) to complete.  


When the power distributor receives financing from the government, it plans to modify 12 of the remaining stations. This will allow the distributor to expand the project.  


"Minimizing carbon emissions and cutting fuel expenses are the two main goals of this endeavor. According to Kenya Power's annual report, these off-grid stations have been using fossil fuel, using an average of two million liters each year.


It is projected that these sites will have a 60 percent reduction in fuel usage upon project completion, hence reducing their carbon footprint.


The World Bank-funded Kenya Off-grid Solar Access Project, worth Sh24 billion ($150 million), is being carried out by Kenya Power.  


In order to improve access to power in 14 counties that have low grid penetration, the initiative aims to establish 98 mini-grids and 473 stand-alone systems.  


Garissa, Isiolo, Kilifi, Kwale, Lamu, Mandera, Marsabit, Narok, Samburu, Taita Taveta, Tana River, Turkana, Wajir, and West Pokot are the regions that the project would cover.

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