Africa’s Largest Bio-Gas Power Plant Opens In Kenya

bio gas plant in naivasha

Key points:

  • Africa’s largest biogas power plant launched operation in Naivasha, Kenya three years after its construction began.
  • The plant has an installed capacity of 2.6 megawatts that will be injected into the national grid further lowering power prices in Kenya.
  • The Africa’s first grid-connect Anaerobic Digester 7.5 million dollar project will reduce the diesel-dependence of thermal plants in Kenya.

Summary:

Three years after the ground breaking of a $7.5 million project Africa’s first grid-connect Anaerobic Digester has started operations with an installed capacity of 2.6 megawatts.

The biogas power plant is located in Naivasha in Kenya’s Nakuru County and it will inject the installed capacity to the national grid further lowering electricity prices for Kenyans.

The power plant uses farm waste digested by micro-organisms that feed in absence of oxygen to produce biogas. The plant is set to reduce the dependency by thermal plants in Kenya on diesel cost cutting on the diesel purchase.

The biogas plant was built by Tropical Power which is in the final stages of a deal with the national electricity distributor in Kenya; Kenya Power and Lighting Company. Additionally, plans at the plant to construct a 10MW solar project by 2016 were underway in line with Kenya’s goal of looking into alternative green energy for Kenyans.

An anaerobic digestion is a collection of processes that microorganisms in the absence of oxygen breakdown biodegradable material used either for industrial or domestic purposes to manage waste and produce fuels. The process has gained popularity in the recent year as a process to treat human and farm waste and even produce power for people especially in the rural areas of many African countries.

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The project has other crucial benefits seeing as the waste from the anaerobic digester is usable as fertilizer to be used at flower farms in the Naivasha area. The plant is expected to reduce the Carbon emissions by saving up to 5 million liters of diesel annually which is in line with UNEP carbon emission regulations that warned of dire consequences if the carbon emissions don’t go to zero in the next 50 years.

Naivasha has been recently ranked as the fifth fastest growing town in the larger Easter African region and as such development of premises and industries is at an all-time high sky-rocketing the electricity demand.

Kenya has a rooted commitment to increasing the percentage of people in the country that have access to power in her short term agenda. This has resulted to exploration of alternative power sources to reduce the dependence on hydro-power and looking into renewable energy like biogas, solar, wind and geothermal power.

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