New High Voltage Power Project Set to Lower Electricity Costs in Kenya

By Soko Directory Team / Published May 7, 2019 | 5:54 am



Universal power Access

The Western parts of Kenya, will, for the first time receive geothermal electricity once the 220kV/ 400kV Olkaria-Lessos-Kisumu line is completed.

The 300km high voltage line project is expected to save the country 2 billion shillings worth of electricity per year lost through leakages during transportation once it is completed.

The construction is set for completion early 2020 and it will link counties in western parts of the country to the geothermal power plants in Olkaria, Naivasha.

“The line, once complete, will save at least Sh2 billion that is lost via technical losses in the current 132kV lines that are overstretched at the moment. Further savings will come from the shutdown of the current thermal generator at Muhoroni,” Fernandes Barasa, the Managing Director at Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (KETRACO) said.

READ: Farmers Should Adopt Mechanized Agriculture to Avoid Losses Resulting from Climate Change

Power lines with low voltage often lose electricity in high capacities. The heavy electricity losses are the difference between the units of electricity that retailer Kenya Power buys from producers and the actual units sold to homes and businesses.

Since these losses are factored in tariff setting, consumers are affected, which is why a more efficient transmission line will save them in terms of power bills.

Counties in western Kenya have been relying on Sondu Miriu and Turkwel hydropower stations whose supply is insufficient and unreliable as they are weather dependent.

Some also rely on the expensive backup electricity from gas turbine station fueled by kerosene at Muhoroni in Kisumu. The other alternative has been costly imports from neighboring Uganda.

While the counties suffer electricity shortage, the Olkaria geothermal station in the Rift has surplus electricity, some of which is sitting idle due to lack of enough transmission lines.

“The project will, therefore, offer an evacuation route for the geothermal power from Olkaria to West Kenya and also provide voltage support to the region,” Barasa noted.

SEE ALSO: Bad Debt: The Big Ideas Syndrome

Efficient power transmission to the western counties will rejuvenate and ignite production activities ensuring uninterrupted operations for factories, businesses, and households.

Most importantly, the new power line is aimed at making sure that households across the country enjoy low electricity bills considering how power tariffs on the national grid are harmonized regardless of location and energy source.

The 300km Olkaria-Lessos-Kisumu line runs from Naivasha steam fields through Eldoret to the lakeside city of Kisumu.

The project is worth 18.2 billion shillings is financed by Japan through JICA. The contracted firms are Kalpataru, NARI Group, and Sieyuan.

The project is divided into three phases. The first one encompasses the construction of a 400 kilovolt (kV) line from Olkaria to Lessos (213km) with a capacity to carry up to 1,200 megawatts (MW) of electricity.

RELATED: Poor Regulation and High Production Costs Choking Investment in Manufacturing Industry

The second lot, which carries 400 MW of power runs from Lessos to Kisumu, a distance of 77km whereas the third phase will involve the construction of substation extensions at Olkaria, Lessos, and Kisumu (Mamboleo), with a new switchyard at Kibos.

The switchyard will be fundamental in providing feeders and offering Kisumu County with alternative supply, creating redundancy, hence fewer downtimes.

In 2017, the Coastal region equally started receiving geothermal power following the completion of the Mombasa-Nairobi line that is connected to Olkaria steam fields. Before that, coastal towns fully relied on expensive electricity from diesel generators stationed at the coast.

SEE ALSO: High Cost of Electricity in Kenya Forcing Industries to Relocate 

KETRACO is the agency behind construction and operation of high voltage transmission lines (132kV and above), with those below falling in Kenya Power’s domain.




About Soko Directory Team

Soko Directory is a Financial and Markets digital portal that tracks brands, listed firms on the NSE, SMEs and trend setters in the markets eco-system.Find us on Facebook: facebook.com/SokoDirectory and on Twitter: twitter.com/SokoDirectory

View other posts by Soko Directory Team


More Articles From This Author








Trending Stories










Other Related Articles










SOKO DIRECTORY & FINANCIAL GUIDE



ARCHIVES

2024
  • January 2024 (238)
  • February 2024 (227)
  • March 2024 (190)
  • April 2024 (133)
  • May 2024 (157)
  • June 2024 (65)
  • 2023
  • January 2023 (182)
  • February 2023 (203)
  • March 2023 (322)
  • April 2023 (298)
  • May 2023 (268)
  • June 2023 (214)
  • July 2023 (212)
  • August 2023 (257)
  • September 2023 (237)
  • October 2023 (266)
  • November 2023 (286)
  • December 2023 (177)
  • 2022
  • January 2022 (293)
  • February 2022 (329)
  • March 2022 (358)
  • April 2022 (292)
  • May 2022 (271)
  • June 2022 (232)
  • July 2022 (278)
  • August 2022 (253)
  • September 2022 (246)
  • October 2022 (196)
  • November 2022 (232)
  • December 2022 (167)
  • 2021
  • January 2021 (182)
  • February 2021 (227)
  • March 2021 (325)
  • April 2021 (259)
  • May 2021 (285)
  • June 2021 (272)
  • July 2021 (277)
  • August 2021 (232)
  • September 2021 (271)
  • October 2021 (305)
  • November 2021 (364)
  • December 2021 (249)
  • 2020
  • January 2020 (272)
  • February 2020 (310)
  • March 2020 (390)
  • April 2020 (321)
  • May 2020 (335)
  • June 2020 (327)
  • July 2020 (333)
  • August 2020 (276)
  • September 2020 (214)
  • October 2020 (233)
  • November 2020 (242)
  • December 2020 (187)
  • 2019
  • January 2019 (251)
  • February 2019 (215)
  • March 2019 (283)
  • April 2019 (254)
  • May 2019 (269)
  • June 2019 (249)
  • July 2019 (335)
  • August 2019 (293)
  • September 2019 (306)
  • October 2019 (313)
  • November 2019 (362)
  • December 2019 (318)
  • 2018
  • January 2018 (291)
  • February 2018 (213)
  • March 2018 (275)
  • April 2018 (223)
  • May 2018 (235)
  • June 2018 (176)
  • July 2018 (256)
  • August 2018 (247)
  • September 2018 (255)
  • October 2018 (282)
  • November 2018 (282)
  • December 2018 (184)
  • 2017
  • January 2017 (183)
  • February 2017 (194)
  • March 2017 (207)
  • April 2017 (104)
  • May 2017 (169)
  • June 2017 (205)
  • July 2017 (189)
  • August 2017 (195)
  • September 2017 (186)
  • October 2017 (235)
  • November 2017 (253)
  • December 2017 (266)
  • 2016
  • January 2016 (164)
  • February 2016 (165)
  • March 2016 (189)
  • April 2016 (143)
  • May 2016 (245)
  • June 2016 (182)
  • July 2016 (271)
  • August 2016 (247)
  • September 2016 (233)
  • October 2016 (191)
  • November 2016 (243)
  • December 2016 (153)
  • 2015
  • January 2015 (1)
  • February 2015 (4)
  • March 2015 (164)
  • April 2015 (107)
  • May 2015 (116)
  • June 2015 (119)
  • July 2015 (145)
  • August 2015 (157)
  • September 2015 (186)
  • October 2015 (169)
  • November 2015 (173)
  • December 2015 (205)
  • 2014
  • March 2014 (2)
  • 2013
  • March 2013 (10)
  • June 2013 (1)
  • 2012
  • March 2012 (7)
  • April 2012 (15)
  • May 2012 (1)
  • July 2012 (1)
  • August 2012 (4)
  • October 2012 (2)
  • November 2012 (2)
  • December 2012 (1)
  • 2011
    2010
    2009
    2008
    2007
    2006
    2005
    2004
    2003
    2002
    2001
    2000
    1999
    1998
    1997
    1996
    1995
    1994
    1993
    1992
    1991
    1990
    1989
    1988
    1987
    1986
    1985
    1984
    1983
    1982
    1981
    1980
    1979
    1978
    1977
    1976
    1975
    1974
    1973
    1972
    1971
    1970
    1969
    1968
    1967
    1966
    1965
    1964
    1963
    1962
    1961
    1960
    1959
    1958
    1957
    1956
    1955
    1954
    1953
    1952
    1951
    1950