Thermal power Earnings by Kenya Electricity Generating Co (KenGen) is set to drop significantly as the government begins a gradual shutdown of its diesel generators at the Coast after the region was connected to cheaper steam power.
Kipevu I and III based in Mombasa are set to be pulled out of the grid in “a few months” after the switching on of a high-voltage power line to evacuate cheap geothermal electricity from Olkaria, Energy Secretary Charles Keter said.
KenGen’s earnings from thermal power was Sh3.79 billion in June 2016, accounting for 12.8 per cent of total electricity revenue of Sh29.5 billion in the review period.
“Kipevu is not operating at maximum hours. They’re only running on need basis. We are gradually increasing the amount being channeled to the Coast to ensure stability of the line,” Mr Keter said in an interview.
“We expect them to earn more from Olkaria fields to compensate for the thermal,” he said.
Hitherto, the coastal region was not connected to the Olkaria system, meaning customers at the region were largely served by expensive thermal power plants.