Kenya, one of the hottest places in the world is set to become the site of Africa’s most ambitious plan in the fight against climate change.
Africa’s most ambitious project of renewable energy will be the installation of 365 giant wind turbines around Lake Turkana in northern Kenya. The project will be completed in 2012, when the £533m project will have a capacity of 300MW, a quarter of country’s current capacity.
Until now, only north African countries such as Egypt and Morocco have used wind energy for commercial purposes on any real scale on the continent, but things began to change. Governments in southern Sahara desert have started to exploit the vast wind potential, which could efficiently meet a surging demand for electricity and ending blackouts.
Besides the Turkana project, funded by African Development Bank, private investors plans to build another windfarm near Naivasha, the well-known tourist town. In addition, most of the electricity already comes from clean sources like hydropower and a further 11% from geothermal plants.
Currently fewer than one-in-five Kenyans have access to electric energy but demand is rising quickly, especially in rural areas, especially that destruction of water catchment areas and unpredictable rainfall have disrupted the country’s massive hydroelectricity output.