Wind Energy Sector Overview

Installed capacity of grid-connected wind energy: 25 MW

Installed capacity of wind hybrids in off-grid stations: 0.55 MW

Wind energy development in Kenya is expected to increase from the current 25MW to at least 1246MW by 2018 and onwards. Much of this will be through Private Investors, facilitated under the Feed-in Tariffs Policy (946MW) and the Least Cost Power Development Plan (300MW). Under Feed-in Tariffs policy, the Government has guaranteed prioritized dispatch of electricity from wind power plants at pre-set tariffs. Already three wind PPAs have been executed with IPPs for development of 460MW by 2018, and there are several proposals at various stages of finalization of PPAs, feasibility studies and/or financing arrangements. There are plans to increase the wind-diesel hybrids systems in off grid areas from the current 0.55MW to 10 MW by 2018.

The Government is currently in the process of introducing the renewable Energy Auction system for all projects above 10MW. This is to allow electricity consumers to benefit from technological advancements that have seen a reduction in the production costs for most of the renewable energy technologies.

The following is some of the wind projects under development or have been developed either on-grid or off-grid.

  1. Kengen wind Park in Ngong 25MW
  2. Lake Turkana wind power in Loiyagalani 300 MW – under construction
  3. Kinangop wind park – Kinangop – 60MW – under construction
  4. Marsabit mini grid 500kW
  5. Habasweni Mini grid – 50kw
  6. St Patterson Memorial Secondary School – Kajiado – 3kW powering the classrooms and dormitories
  7. North Horr Boys’ Secondary School – Marsabit 200W powering classrooms

Wind Energy Resource Information

In 2013, Kenya undertook the task of updating the Wind Resource Atlas. This emanated from data collected from 95 wind data logger installed all over the country. The wind speed sensors were installed at a height of 20 and 40 meters above ground level. As part of the updating the Wind Resource Atlas, a wind prospectus was prepared which gives a clear strategy for Kenya to harness it is immense wind resource.

The prospectus also recommended installation of higher wind mast preferable at the average hub height of most wind turbines in 18 highly potential areas. The Government has now installed 18 wind masts at a height of 100metrs. The sensors are at three (3) levels of 100M, 80M and 60M. The purpose is to collect data and undertake the feasibility studies in readiness for Renewable Energy Auctions.

Wind Energy Legislation

In 2008, Kenya launched a Renewable Energy Feed-In Tariff policy which aimed at promoting all renewable energy resources, including wind energy. The current revised FiT policy (2012) can be downloaded at: http://www.energy.go.ke/ or http://www.renewableenergy.go.ke/

In the Energy and Petroleum Policy which is going to be enacted soon, the Government of Kenya has formulated the following policies and strategies for wind power development:

  1. Develop institutional capacity for wide spread use of wind energy;
  2. Continually review and enforce regulations and standards for wind energy technology ;
  3. Collect and compile wind energy data and update the wind atlas;
  4. Provide incentives for wind energy development;
  5. Support hybrid power generation systems involving wind and other energy sources;
  6. Provide a framework for connection of electricity generated from wind energy to national and isolated grids, through direct sale or net metering;
  7. Plan and invest in transmission lines to facilitate evacuation of power from areas with high wind potential to major load centres and
  8. Undertake Research Development and Dissemination (RD&D).