The Kenyan government has approved the redevelopment of the Gogo hydroelectric dam in the west of the country. Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) will redevelop the dam, increasing its capacity from the current 2 MW to 8.6 MW.
The project is expected to boost the reliability of power supply and stimulate economic activity in the Nyanza and Western Kenya regions. It will also create jobs and contribute to Kenya’s clean energy goals.
KenGen’s Managing Director, Peter Njenga, said the project is a “momentous milestone for the people of Western Kenya and a testament to the government’s commitment to regional development.”
“This project not only represents a step forward in the energy sector, but also brings economic growth, job creation and improved livelihoods for our communities, while contributing to our clean energy goals,” he said.
The existing Gogo hydroelectric power plant was commissioned in 1958 and has been suffering from frequent breakdowns and difficulties in the supply of spare parts due to the obsolescence of its infrastructure.
The redevelopment project will involve the rehabilitation of existing facilities and the construction of new ones. It is expected to be completed within two years.
Kenya has one of the most diversified electricity mixes on the African continent, with an installed capacity of 2,819 MW. Geothermal power accounts for 828 MW of this, followed by hydroelectric power. Photovoltaic solar power, wind power, and biomass also generate electricity for the grid.
However, Kenya still imports fossil fuels, which generate 749 MW according to Power Africa. The redevelopment of the Gogo hydroelectric dam will help Kenya to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels and achieve its clean energy goals.
The project is a positive development for Kenya and the East African region as a whole. It is a concrete example of how renewable energy can be used to drive economic development and create jobs