Electricity generating firm, KenGen plans to develop 140MW Olkaria V and Olkaria VI plants in the next two to four years.  This is as a result of a drilling process conducted in June within one pad with a total capacity of 33MW, after striking 30MW from a single geothermal well in the same field in 2014. The wells will be connected to the proposed 140MW Olkaria V project, KenGen’s next project, is set to kick off before the end of the year.

Electricity generating firm, KenGen plans to develop 140MW Olkaria V and Olkaria VI plants in the next two to four years.  This is as a result of a drilling process conducted in June within one pad with a total capacity of 33MW, after striking 30MW from a single geothermal well in the same field in 2014. The wells will be connected to the proposed 140MW Olkaria V project, KenGen’s next project, is set to kick off before the end of the year.

Olkaria V Power Plant is a 140MW project and steam recorded for the plant is 166.4 MW while the other 140MW Olkaria VI plant has 124.3 MW of available steam. The State firm has already hired consultants for the project and is in the process of selecting contractors. Also, negotiations with development partners for funding are ongoing as the drilling programme nears completion. Its aim is to supply steam for over 400MW that is planned for development in the next two to four years.

In addition, KenGen has successfully drilled steam wells that can generate 374.7MW megawatts at its Olkaria fields.  The wells will be used to develop three power plants with a total capacity of 350MW. KenGen intends to continue drilling other wells to supply steam to an additional 70MW unit at the recently unveiled Olkaria I unit 4&5 plants. Olkaria 1 Unit 6, a single unit of 70MW to be constructed at Olkaria 1 has recorded 84MW of steam.

The remaining steam will be used at the wellheads programme to ensure that the steam available is converted to electricity, pending construction of the power plants. This far, the wellhead generation units are providing a total of 45MW of electricity.
Kenya is the eighth largest producer of geothermal globally with a production of 585 MW, which is equivalent to 5 per cent of the world’s geothermal energy. KenGen has grown geothermal generation from 17 per cent to 40 per cent of its electricity portfolio hence reducing over reliance on hydro and thermal sources for electricity production.

To accelerate its geothermal power production programme, KenGen has also resorted to mobile wellhead plants which are faster to deploy. Fourteen such wellheads are expected to be complete by 2016. Besides, a transmission line connecting a new well head Unit 914 has been completed paving the way for injection of a further 27MW from the wellhead units.
The Olkaria I Unit 4&5 and Olkaria IV has helped cut electricity bills by about 30 per cent since August 2014 following a 65 per cent drop in the fuel surcharge to stabilize at just over KES2.50 per kWh lately.

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