Liquefied petroleum gas is a modern alternative fuel fronted by the Government of Kenya for use as a preferred alternative to the existing Kerosene and wood fuels. This is because it reduces harmful emissions that form hazards on health and environmental degradation. The aim of this project is to supply five million Kenyans with 6kg LPG cylinder, over three years at 70% subsidized cost.
According to the World Bank report, currently 87% of Kenyans use solid fuels for cooking and 5% use kerosene, meaning that only less than 5% of Kenyans use LPG as their primary cooking fuel. The Government has increased taxes on Kerosene in order to discourage it and encourage fuel adulteration which has made it more expensive for domestic use therefore LPG availability and affordability targets are expected to be achieved.
Although LPG is commonly used in urban areas due to greater population density compared to rural areas due to low availability of firewood, Kenya Pipeline Company shall immediately construct 15,000 tons of mini LPG imports storage terminal at the Mombasa refinery site which shall be linked to the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) for efficient and cost-effective transport to upcountry market.
The Ministry through its state agencies shall also establish storage facilities in various major towns in the country where marketers and distributors shall lift bulk LPG for bottling in their filling plants. The marketers and distributors shall erect LPG filling plants in all county towns.
To initiate the LPG growth programme, the Government has already allocated Sh. 3bn to show its commitment, in the 2016/17 budget. The Government through the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum will be procuring the 6kg cylinders thereafter, ensuring the major oil and gas company, National Oil is supplying them to the consumers.
Through this programme, Kenya’s annual LPG per capital consumption is targeted to increase from 2.8 to 5.0 by ensuring increased storage facilities: bottling and filling plants and expansion of marketing and distribution networks.
We are hopeful that the LPG market shall expand significantly now and in years to come because of the large consumer segment who are currently using conventional fuels thus, shall provide a huge potential market.
When every household in Kenya is electrified and can use clean cooking fuel, then we will have achieved success.