Ambitious Plans Questioned By Regional Realties

BMI View: Kenya's aspirations to expand its non-hydro renewables industry, particularly geothermal and wind power, is well-documented and we have been following the country's progress towards the adoption of renewable energy closely. However, Kenya's 'Vision 30' energy strategy, outlining the trajectory of the country's energy agenda up to 2030, also looks to incorporate nuclear power, gas and coal-fired generation into the domestic power mix - sources that are currently not utilised within the country. Although this would no doubt help to secure its energy supply and reduce its dependence on unreliable hydropower and costly oil imports, we are sceptical as to whether this strategy can be realised, given the numerous barriers hindering the power, and wider energy and infrastructure sectors.

Kenya is adopting a multi-pronged strategy in an attempt to diversify its power mix a way from unreliable and climate- dependent hydropower and hydrocarbon imports. As such, the 'Vision 30' energy agenda, which provides a pathway for power expansion through to 2030, envisages the utilisation of both renewables and conventional energy technologies -including geothermal, wind power, coal, gas and nuclear generation. Overall, the strategy aims to increase total electricity capacity to 19GW by 2030 (from an estimated 2GW in 2012), with geothermal contributing over a quarter to this and nuclear nearly a fifth. Undoubtedly this strategy is hugely ambitions; particularly considering that the country has yet to develop a nuclear, coal or gas power generation industry.

Renewables Expanding

Aspirations Too High?
Vision 30 Energy Policy, By Type and % of Total Capacity, 2030 (LHS) and Kenya Total Capacity, MW, By Type, 2022f (RHS)

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This article is tagged to:
Sector: Power, Renewables
Geography: Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda

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