GEOTHERMAL

KenGen's Olkaria V adds 79MW to national grid

President Uhuru Kenyatta broke ground for Olkaria V power project in April 2017

In Summary

• Olkaria V is expected to inject a total of 158 MW to the grid once Unit 2 is commissioned.

• The project is funded by Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) and the Government of Kenya.

The Olkaria II Geothermal Power Plant in Naivasha.
The Olkaria II Geothermal Power Plant in Naivasha.
Image: JACK OWUOR

The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) has added 79 megawatts of power to the national grid following the completion of Unit 1 of Olkaria V Geothermal Power Plant.

The Unit was first synchronized to the grid on June 28, and thereafter subjected to commissioning tests.

“It was then taken through a series of load tests until it attained its full design output of 82.7MW,” KenGen Managing Director and CEO Rebecca Miano said on Tuesday.

She said the additional capacity would play a significant role in supporting Kenya’s power needs while enhancing the amount of green energy in the national grid.

We are delighted to announce the completion of the first unit of Olkaria V Geothermal Power Plant and subsequently injecting 79 MW to the national grid. This brings to 612MW the total amount of installed geothermal power capacity by KenGen and will be significant in ensuring that our country’s power needs are met through the continuous use of green energy solutions,” she said.

“Consistent with our long-term plan, we are continuously working on increasing our renewable energy to provide affordable energy to Kenyans while safeguarding the environment. This, in turn, will lead to the provision of stable energy to power households and industries across the country,” she added.

Currently in its last stages of development, Olkaria V Geothermal Power Plant is expected to inject a total of 158 MW to the grid once Unit 2 is synchronized to the grid at the end of August.

President Uhuru Kenyatta officially broke ground for construction of Olkaria V power project in April 2017.

The project is funded by Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA) and the Government of Kenya.

The power plant is part of KenGen’s ambitious green energy development agenda aimed at delivering 721MW of renewable energy by year 2020, at an investment close to about Sh135 billion.

The Nairobi Securities Exchange(NSE) listed power generator is also developing an additional unit(Unit 6) at Olkaria 1.

Over the years, the firm has developed a rich energy mix comprising hydro (819.9MW), geothermal (612 MW), thermal (253.5MW) and wind (25.5MW) with the focus being on renewable energy sources.

About 80 percent of Kenya’s installed capacity is from renewable sources; which is more than three times the global average.