Kenya inaugurates largest solar power plant in East, Central Africa
London, Jan. 7, 2019 (AltAfrica)-Kenya has inaugurated yet another Solar Photovoltaic Power Plant built and financed by the China Jiangxi Corporation for International Economic and Technical Co-operation (CJIC
The 50MW Garissa solar power plant is the largest grid connected solar power plant in East & Central Africa and consists of 200 solar panels connected to inverters and installed on an area of 85 hectares. It is located in Mbalambala, in Garissa County in eastern Kenya.
. The entire system produces 50 MWp. “I am very proud that the project has been successfully completed and is equipped with state-of-the-art equipment. We hope it will serve Kenya for the next 25 years,” says Zhang Jian, representative of CJIC in Kenya.
The project was developed by the . This public institution has signed a 25-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Kenya Power (KPLC), the company that provides the electricity utility.
Under the contract, KPLC will purchase a kWh of electricity at 12 shillings ($0.12), which is 8 shillings ($0.07) less than electricity generated from diesel, the main source of power in Garissa County.
The solar plant, already connected to the grid, is expected to supply 70,000 households in Garissa, or about 350,000 people. This represents almost half of the county’s population.
The project required an investment of $13 billion, or just over $128.5 million. The Kenya Rural Electrification Authority relied on funding from Exim Bank of China to build the Garissa Solar Photovoltaic Power Plant.
. This is the first time that Kenya has developed a major solar power plant to harness its abundant solar energy resource to diversify the power generation mix and reduce energy costs.
Currently this project is contributing about 2% of the national energy mix and has significantly led to a reduction of energy costs in the country thereby promoting the development of clean, reliable, sustainable and affordable electricity.