Work begins on 61MW Kenyan wind farm

wind  CGP Grey flickrThe Kinangop Wind Farm is projected to be one of East Africa's largest wind farms. (Image souce: CGP Grey/Flickr) Work on the 61MW Kinangop Wind Farm in Kenya has commenced with Aurecon appointed as the main project engineer by Kinangop Wind Park Ltd

The Kinangop Wind Farm has been touted to be one of the largest wind park investments in eastern Africa. African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIIM) is the majority owner, and the farm will be built by Iberdrola Engineering, Aurecon stated.

GE will provide 38 1.6MW wind turbines for the project, with the company stating that the wind farm will generate enough renewable electricity to power nearly 150,000 homes in Kenya.

Paul Nel, renewable energy service leader at Aurecon, said, “Kinangop is significant as the first major IPP wind farm in Kenya.”

A Reuters report stated that Kenya generates 1,664MW of electricity and is working on expanding its power supply by adding 5,000MW by 2017. Nearly 50 per cent of Kenya’s energy needs are currently met through hydroelectricity and thermal power.

“Kenya is an exciting growth market for renewable energy with an attractive policy framework, which has enabled the progression of a number of wind and geothermal projects,” added Nel.

Meanwhile, one of the region's most notable wind power projects is the Lake Turkana Wind Power project, which is expected to generate 300MW of power when completed within the next four years. The wind power scheme could save Kenya up to US$150mn annually in money used to import fuel for thermal power generation, claimed estimates made by Lake Turkana Wind Power.

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