SkyPower Inks $2.2 Billion Deal for Massive Solar Power Plant in Kenya

Kenya’s Energy Ministry and SkyPower Global Ltd. will sign a $2.2 billion agreement on Sunday that paves the way for the Canadian company to develop a 1-gigawatt solar project in East Africa’s biggest economy.

The solar project will be developed over five years, SkyPower said Friday in a statement. Kenya currently gets about two-thirds of its electricity from renewable sources, chiefly hydropower stations and geothermal wells. It has no solar developments of that scale.

Kenya in 2013 set out plans for an additional 5,500 megawatts of power, mostly from coal, geothermal sources and liquefied natural gas, to help boost the country’s economic growth to about 10 percent annually from a projected 5.5 percent to 6 percent.

Geothermal accounts for about 25 percent of its 2-gigawatt supply and hydro another 38 percent, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance. Oil feeds about a third of national generation capacity, the London-based researcher estimates. Kenya also has a small biomass and wind farms.

According to SkyPower’s website, the Toronto-based company “is the largest and one of the most successful developers and owners of utility-scale solar photovoltaic energy projects in the world.”

SkyPower “has built, assembled and acquired a pipeline of over 25 gigawatts” worldwide — 6 gigawatts of which was recently announced in bilateral agreements to be built over the next five years in Egypt and Nigeria, it said.

©2015 Bloomberg News

Lead image: Skypower solar project at Thunder Bay Airport in Ontario.


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