On Monday, the African Development Bank (AfDB) signed an agreement with Kenyan state-owned transmission company Ketraco, to provide funding for the development of the Lake Turkana Wind Power interconnection in Kenya, Reuters reported.

The EUR 623 million project which was to begin operating in 2011 has been delayed due to the high risks involved in the transmission process.

The AfDB financed a partial risk guarantee to the value of EUR20 million for the transmission project. This should now reach completion in 2017, enabling the transmission of the wind farm’s first 50MW of generated power. The wind farm is expected to produce a total output of 310MW.lake turkana wind farm

This project could not come at a better time—with frequent power cuts the country is desperate for increased power generation to meet energy demands.

Director of Lake Turkana Wind Power, Carlo Van Wageningen said that if the transmission line is incomplete once the plant begins generating power, the guarantee will help mitigate any risk at that point.

Expanding access

Kenya’s government has plans to expand electricity access to remote communities who currently rely on traditional biomass such as burning wood for lighting and cooking. Currently, distribution utility, Kenya Power, provides 2.8 million residents out of a total population of 40 million with power.

By increasing and expanding the use of modern electricity, the country can increase its efforts in reducing deforestation as well as provide residents with a reliable and sustainable means of power.

Kenya has been involved in developing its geothermal and hydroelectric resources to increase the country’s total generating output, needed to meet the increasing energy demand, with the objective of increasing the current 32% who have access to power.

(Pic Credits: ictnguru, Kenya Engineer)