Testing almost complete on Kenya’s 310MW wind farm

Wind turbines at the Lake Turkana Wind Power project./File/LWTP
Wind turbines at the Lake Turkana Wind Power project./File/LWTP

More than 310MW will be added onto Kenya’s national electricity grid by the end of October when they connect the latest wind farm, according to officials.

Chairman of the Lake Turkana Wind Power (LTWP) Mugo Kibati, told a media briefing in Nairobi on Monday that testing is almost complete on all the wind turbines.

“Barring any unforeseen circumstances, all the 365 wind turbines will be supplying power to the national grid by end of October,” he said.

Kibati stated that the Euros 700m investment is the largest private sector investment in the country to date adding that Kenya has the second most vibrant energy market in Africa, after South Africa.

“The successful completion of the project will showcase Kenya as a safe and reliable investment destination,” said the chairman.

The project was financed by seven equity partners and 14 lenders, who require annual repayment of Euros 74m for their loans.

Kibati said that construction of the wind farm was completed in January but could not produce power, because the Spanish firm contracted to develop the transmission line filed for bankruptcy.

He added that two Chinese firms took over the construction of the 428km electricity transmission line to evacuate the power and completed the infrastructure in August.

LTWP has signed a 20-year power purchase agreement with Kenya Power, the country’s sole power distributor.

Felix Rottmann, Senior Social Specialist at LTWP, said the project would have a transformative effect in remote regions in northwest Kenya.