07 November 2014, Nairobi – POWER unreliability across Africa saw American multinational General Electric rake in $29 billion (Sh2.51 trillion) from back up generator connections last year, its Sub-Saharan leader George Njenga said yesterday.
He said many electricity sensitive sectors in Sub-Sahara Africa opted for generators to deal with power blackouts and fluctuations.
Njenga told a media briefing that GE is targeting to cash in on increased power demand in Kenya’s and Tanzania’s sprawling industrial zones through off the grid power connection to avoid production losses during blackouts.
For GE which estimates its installed power capacity in Kenya at 3MW, independent power producers remain vital toward the realization of the year 2017 power milestone.
Njenga said GEs power output in Kenya which currently stands at 3MW will be increased once the 100MW Kipeto Wind farm in Kajiado county is commissioned next year..
He said they will soon commission a 2.8MW plant in Naivasha that utilizes a biogas digester to produce power from farm waste.
“We want to implement similar projects in Kitale large scale farms as maize has huge potential in biogas production,” he said.
Kenya plans to expand its power generation capacity by 5,000 MW by 2017 from the current 1,700 MW now to reduce tariffs and contain shortages in order to attract investments. It is aggressively developing wind and geothermal energy.
*Richard Mungai – The Star