Solar Power at a New Plant Reaches a Record Level Of 28%

Posted on :Tuesday , 2nd April 2024

The 40 megawatt (MW) Alten Kenya Solarfarms project at Kesses in Uasin Gishu went online last year, setting a new record for solar power producing capacity in Kenya.  

Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) collected data from Kenya Power, which showed that in 2023, solar power generation increased to a record 491.48 million kilowatt-hours (kWh).  


There was a 28.1 percent increase in output from the 383.54 million units produced the year before.  


The opening of the Kesses plant and a significant boost in output from the 40MW-capable Cedate and Malindi solar farms have led to an increase in the generation of solar power.  


The country's generation shortfall was lessened by a 12.4% dip in hydropower output during the severe drought that struck early in the year. 200MW of imported solar power from Ethiopia also made a contribution.  


There was enough power despite the 6.2% decline in wind generation as well because of the significant rise in imports as well as the production of solar and geothermal energy.  


As such, Kenya electricity was able to reduce its 17.5% purchase of expensive thermal electricity.  


The grid is currently supplied with clean energy from Kenya's four 40 MW solar plants: Selenkei, Alten, Malindi, and Cedate. Also contributing a negligible quantity of solar energy to the grid is the 0.3 MW Strathmore solar plant.  


In an effort to profit from the falling costs of solar and wind power's component parts—which coincide with the commissioning of new solar projects—the government has been under increasing pressure to end feed-in tariffs (FiT).  


In September 2021, the work group issued its report to former President Uhuru Kenyatta, suggesting maximum transitional tariffs of US cents 7.5/kWh for solar PV and US cents 7/kWh for wind for those projects that had not yet reached financial close.


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