Tuesday September 4th
Construction of the 400kV Loiyangalani-Suswa power transmission line that will evacuate 310 megawatt (MV) wind power from the Lake Turkana Wind Power Project is complete.
Energy Cabinet Secretary Pre-commissioned the 430 kilometres power line at Loiyangalani in Marsabit County ahead of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s official launch later this month.
The Energy Cabinet Secretary said injection of renewable energy from the Turkana Wind Power project and additional 55 MW from Garissa solar power will reduce the cost of power in the country.
He said the use of renewable energy has reduced the country’s reliance to diesel power adding the country now uses only 14 per cent diesel power down from 50 per cent.
“With the rise of the price of fuel you would automatically expect to see the Fuel Cost Charge (FCC) going up but with the injection of power from this line which is roughly 350 MW it means from the current 700 MW diesel power use we will hardly be running on 200 MW of diesel,” said Mr Keter.
Mr Keter said only isolated areas like Mandera that are not connected to the grid will use diesel power.
The Energy Cabinet Secretary said Kenyans will fully enjoy the benefits of the power line and the Lake Turkana Wind Power project in December this year when the project will be fully operational.
The power transmission line will also enhance communication in Northern Kenya as it carries a fiber optic cable for the entire length of the line.
The Loiyangalani-Suswa power transmission line, which is the largest wind power project in Africa, was completed on time and has been handed over to Kenya Electricity Transmission Company Limited (KETRACO).
Energy Principal Secretary Joseph Njoroge said the power line can transmit up to 1,200 MW.
“Because of foresight we did not construct a line for only 310 MW, one line should be able to do up to 600 MW which means the two can do 1,200 MW,” said Mr Njoroge.