The Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) was voted Africa’s 2014/2015 Energy Company in a survey featuring major utilities across the continent. Additionally, the 280MW - its flagship project and the world’s single largest geothermal project -has been voted as this year’s clean energy project.
The company was feted at this year’s Africa Utilities’ Awards event bringing together experts to showcase renewable projects that are solving Africa’s energy challenges. The award ceremony was held in Cape Town, South Africa.
President Kenyatta led Kenyans in sending congratulatory messages to the company for the fete.
“The 280MW Olkaria Geothermal Project , the world’s largest such power plant of its kind was voted Africa’s Clean Energy Project of the year 2014/15 while KenGen was voted as Africa’s power firm of the year . Congratulations”, said President Kenyatta.
Over the past year, KenGen has achieved several milestones, including consolidating its market share to 79 %.
The 280MW, which has been running since last December is a score for KenGen and the country, having helped, displaced a similar amount of the expensive thermal power from the grid.
Additionally, the plant has moved the country up the geothermal ladder globally. KenGen's geothermal capacity has increased four-fold to the current level of 470MW, while Kenya is now the world’s eighth largest supplier of geothermal energy, with 585MW of installed capacity (this represents five per cent of the total global geothermal production).
The 280 MW lifted KenGen’s half year revenues by Kshs.3 billion to Kshs12.8 billion while greening the national electricity generation mix. Currently, the company is injecting 1575 MW to the national grid, with geothermal for the sixth month has been the main source of electricity and complements output from hydro dams.
The Olkaria project is also important for electricity trade among the East African countries as KenGen is sharing its skills, expertise and experiences as they also seek to exploit their geothermal resources.
KenGen had been nominated alongside five other firms: African Power Utility of the Year Electricity Company and GRIDCo, both from Ghana. Uganda’s Electricity Transmission Company Limited, and Umeme. Another contestant was Niger Delta Power Holding Company Ltd of Nigeria.
Firms from South Africa dominated the list of those competing for the Clean Energy Project. They were: Black River Park Office – North Park, Jasper Solar Project, Solar Reserve LTD, Kaxu Solar One, Abengoa Solar. Also on the list was Rwanda’s Field Plant, Gigawatt Global Rwanda.
“KenGen is proud to be on the lead in moving the country towards self-sufficiency and providing reliable, affordable and renewable energy,” said Managing Director and CEO Eng. Albert Mugo of the award.