GDC continues geothermal drilling and efforts to establish local industrial parks in Baringo-Silali, Kenya.
Kenya’s Geothermal Development Company (GDC) is stepping up geothermal exploration work after the Geothermal Risk Mitigation Facility for East Africa received a grant of 549 million SH5 ($ 5 million), AllAfrica reported last month.
At the same time, the company is continuing efforts to build industrial parks in Baringo County that could tap geothermal heat and power from wells drilled by the company.
“Thermal parks will change Baringo County and the whole country. A heat park with reliable and affordable energy will create jobs and boost the region’s economy, ”said Jared Othieno, Managing Director of GDC.
In June 2021, the GDC organized a tour to the officials of the German Development Bank (KFW), led by the country director of the Bank for Kenya and Somalia, Oska von Maltazan, who praised the GDC’s strategy for integrating freshwater projects into the communities.
“The progress so far has been impressive. There are many highlights in this project … Most exciting was seeing this huge fountain let off steam and demonstrate the power of the earth. If this energy is fully used, it will fuel great economic growth for this country, ”Matazan said.
The German KfW is financing the first phase of the Baringo-Silali geothermal project with 80 million euros (95 million US dollars) and supports the drilling of up to 20 exploration and test wells, the construction of roads and water supplies, feasibility studies and management consulting.
It is hoped that once the current agreement expires, funding for the project can be extended in August 2022.
With an estimated total potential of around 3,000 MW, GDC plans a capacity development of up to 300 MW in the geothermal fields Paka, Korosi and Silali by 2030.
Also last month, GDC reported that it had successfully drilled one of its top performing wells.
There appears to be strong local interest from investors in setting up businesses in the Naivasha Special Economic Zone with access to cheap geothermal energy from Olkaria and Menengai, as well as easy train connections to the port of Mombasa.