Kenya Ranked Among Top Nations for Green Power
Kenya has been ranked as one of the world’s leading nations for green power in the latest Renewables Global Status report.
The report shows Kenya has developed the world’s fourth-largest geothermal energy network, expanding to a total of 600 megawatts by the end of 2015. That puts the East African nation ahead of Japan and Germany in fifth and sixth place retrospectively. Only Turkey, the United States and Mexico now have a larger capacity than Kenya.
Geothermal a priority for Kenya
As African nations work to find a sustainable balance between renewable and non-renewable energy, geothermal power is becoming a priority for Kenya. The challenge is to maintain and improve the current supply of energy across the country but also establish a sustainable exit strategy from using non-renewable sources.
As things stand, geothermal now accounts for more than a quarter of Kenya’s total power capacity (2,333MW). However, it’s estimated the country has an untapped potential of 10,000MW of steam energy in its Rift Valley basin alone, where exploration works are still ongoing.
African nations going green
The challenge isn’t reserved for developing nations either. The move away from non-renewable is a difficult balancing act for everyone but the situation in many African nations is unique.
Kenya, for example, still needs to get electricity to much of its rural population. So it’s not necessarily a question of replacing existing power systems but establishing new ones. This allows Kenya and many other African nations to set up green systems from day one in certain parts of the country.
For that to happen, though, the right funds need to be in place and that typically means overseas investment. This opens the door for new potential but it also comes with the risk of overseas powers demanding their share of Africa’s abundant natural resources.
By Christopher T Cooper, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20744356