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21 September 2017

Kenya: off-grid solar project to benefit 14 countries

On Tuesday, Kenya launched the Kenya Off-grid Solar Access Project (KOSAP), a $150 million World Bank supported initiative.

The intention is for the project to provide power to multiple areas across the east African region – forming part of governments 2020 vision.

Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum Joseph Njoroge, told a media briefing in Nairobi that approximately 690,000 households in 14 counties will benefit from the project, Xinhuanet reported.

"KOSAP will involve setting up mini-grids in areas that are not currently connected to the national electricity grid," Njoroge said.

Off-grid solar project

Xinhuanet  reported that data from the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum indicates that 6.2 million households are connected to electricity, representing 70% of the population.

According to Njoroge, the north has many arid and semi-arid areas that are not currently connected to the electricity grid.

He explained: "This is because the cost of electricity infrastructure is very expensive given large distances and low population densities.

“As a result these households are forced to use kerosene for lightning and cooking.” Read more...

The project aims to compliment the Last Mile Connectivity Project that subsidises households to access the national grid, media said.

Sudeshna Banerjee, Practice Manager, for World Bank's Global Energy and Extractives Practice for the African Region said that the country's electricity grid footprint remains largely localised in the central belt of the country where 80% of the population lives.

 

Featured image: Stock

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