23 September 2013, Nairobi – Kenya’s Energy Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir has asked development partners to back Kenya’s plan to establish a nuclear power programme.
Speaking in Austria during the 57th International Atomic Energy Agency general conference, Chirchir said Kenya’s quest to develop nuclear power is out of the need to diversify its energy mix.
“This is guided by the need to mitigate the rising cost of fossil fuels for electricity generation and to meet our growing domestic and industrial energy demands,” Chirchir said.
The CS said a draft Atomic Energy Bill has been submitted to the IAEA for legal review and technical input.
Once enacted to law, he said, it will lead to the establishment of an Atomic Energy Commission to regulate nuclear -related projects and businesses in the country.
The Bill will also give guidelines on radio active waste management and decommissioning of nuclear facilities.
Currently the Nuclear Electricity Board undertakes the development and implementation of a nuclear power programme.
Apart from nuclear, the country is also exploring wind, geothermal and solar energy to boost growing demand for power.
Kenya largely depends and uses hydro generated power which is not in constant supply due to dropping water levels depending on the season.
Peak power consumption is about 1,300 megawatts of electricity compared to Kenya Power’s peak generation of 1,500 megawatts.
– The Star