Kenya’s investment in geothermal and wind energy has seen the country ranked 10th in an index on developing economies spearheading renewable energy efforts.
The index, which assessed 58 emerging nations across South America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia, placed Kenya third on the continent behind Uganda and South Africa.
The country scored favourably in creating an enabling framework for the development of green energy, with cumulative investment said to have more than tripled from Sh120 billion in 2011 to Sh400 billion last year.
Kenya is estimated to hold more than 10,000MW worth of geothermal energy potential. In recent years, the country has scaled up exploitation of these reserves.
SCARCITY OF LOANS
Data from State-owned power generating firm, KenGen, indicates in the last financial year, renewable sources accounted for close to 50 per cent of the country’s energy generation mix. This means that out of an installed energy capacity 1,629MW, geothermal and wind power plants now feed 578MW into the national power grid, placing Kenya in the ranks of developed economies leading the world in geothermal power production.
However, market conditions and the global economy over the past year saw the country slip in some indicators as other countries caught up.
“On the clean energy investment and climate financing parameter, Kenya’s score improved, thanks to the relatively high volume ($484 million/Sh48 billion) of investment in 2015. However, this was somewhat offset by the scarcity of loans and grants, and the high average cost of debt,” says the report in part.
This is the third edition of the global index produced by Climatescope, the clean energy country competitiveness index and online tool fronted by US and British government agencies to create a glimpse of clean energy activity in emerging markets.
Countries are ranked on their past, present, and future ability to attract investment for clean energy companies and projects including biofuels, biomass, and waste, geothermal, solar, wind and small hydro (up to 50MW).