Renewable investments in Kenya gives room for Carbon trading

There are plans to harvest carbon trading from the Lake Turkana Wind Farm, this is according to Kenya’s Ministry of Energy.

A small percentage of carbon credits will be invested back to the Turkana Community.  This arrangement is incorporated into the Power Purchase Agreement that was signed between Lake Turkana Wind Power Plant and Kenya Power and Lighting Company.

According to the 2017 report by the Low Emission Development Strategy (LEDS) global partnership, the energy plant is expected to earn Kenya about $6.6 million annually from carbon credits.

Funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the report adds that it will cut emissions amounting to 740,000 metric tonnes of carbon equivalent annually, by displacing fossil fuel-fed electricity generation.


Thermal Power

The Lake Turkana wind farm carbon model is expected to borrow from the one used in Olkaria by the Kenya Electricity Generating Company, Where part of the proceeds given to the community.

Carbon credits, also known as certified emissions are processed through the Clean Development Mechanism to reward projects that have made progress in reducing carbon emissions.

Kenya is also engaged in the Voluntary Carbon Market through projects that satisfy the Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation Plus (REDD+ model)

The energy generated by the Lake Turkana Wind Farm will reduce the use of thermal in power generation. This is what makes it ideal to gain carbon credits.


Cost of Energy

In January of 2019, the government of Kenya had confirmed that it had connected 310MW of electricity from the Lake Turkana wind farm to the national grid.

The largest of its kind in Africa, the Ksh 72 billion projects took 10 years to complete and is powered by 365 turbines.


Energy Technologies

A media report by the Guardian indicates that there are various carbon offset schemes that allow individuals and companies to invest in environmental projects around the world in order to balance their own carbon footprints.

Some schemes use clean energy technologies or purchasing and ripping up carbon credits from an emissions trading scheme while others work by soaking CO2 direct from the air by planting trees.

Apart from the Lake Turkana Windfarm, other projects have been registered by the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change, which includes the Mumias Sugar Company’s sugarcane bagasse co-generation, Olkaria II geothermal expansion. The Lake Turkana wind farm project was registered by CDM and UNFCCC in February 2011.


Trading Opportunities

This move by the government of Kenya is expected to open up carbon trading opportunities for medium and small micro-enterprises, including those that manufacture clean cookstoves, domestic biogas, and charcoal briquettes.

Kenya requires energy to the tune of 40,000MW. The current capacity is at about 2700MW.


@Bandhiga Media