The development of renewable energy received a shot in the arm after the African Development Bank set up a 21 billion shillings equity fund. The fund will be geared towards small and medium hydro, wind, geothermal, solar and biomass projects in the Sub Saharan region.Other interested parties include the Global Environment Facility which has contributed 45 billion shillings, European Investment Bank and the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund.
“AfDB is pleased to see that the African Renewable Energy Fund is fully capitalised to deliver on its pan-African mandate. This is key for accelerating deployment of modern, clean and affordable energy in the continent,” said Mr Alex Rugamba, director of AfDB’s energy, environment and climate change department in a statement.
The fund will be managed by Berkeley Energy Africa which is a Mauritian based company. The company will mainly target independent power producers with projects between five and 50 megawatts. The company will be the major shareholder.The Berkeley team comprises, among others, Mr Eddy Njoroge, the former chief executive officer of the Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen). He was was recently appointed to the board of UK-owned independent power producer Globeleq.
For the government to achieve its target of increasing the installed power generating capacity to 5,000 megawatts by the end of next year. It needs to tap into the renewable energy sector since it has not been exploited fully. Wind and solar need to be exploited more, morover the country has favourable regimes for both sources.