Enel Green Power, Powerhive to develop solar grids in Western Kenya

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The mini-grids are expected to connect around 90,000 people to clean energy. Image: Enel Green Power

Enel Green Power is partnering up with mini-grid technology solutions provider and developer Powerhive to construct and operate mini-grids in 100 villages located across Kenya.

The grids will require an investment of around US$12 million over the span of 2016 — 93% provided by Enel Green Power and 7% from Powerhive.

The project, which will be developed by Powerhive, will be comprised of solar mini-grids with a total installed capacity of 1MW and will be built in the Kenyan counties of Kisii and Nyamira. Once completed, the grids will provide clean energy to 20,000 homes, businesses, schools and health care centers, powering around 90,000 people in the process.

Francesco Venturini, CEO of Enel Green Power, said: Kenya’s rich and differentiated technology mix in the renewables industry offers a quite unique platform for the business development of Enel Green Power in Africa. This country couples a low electrification rate, still in the range of 30%, with one of the highest mobile phone penetration rates of the region, thus making this union ideal to implement innovative solutions able to integrate the electrification of rural areas with generation from renewables, storage facilities as well as advanced billing systems.”

Integrating these grids with energy storage facilities will give these systems the ability to balance supply and demand, reducing concerns over offset variations in customer loads and unpredictable spikes in power generation.

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