Lighting villages at the end of the line with geothermal energy in eastern Baringo lowlands, Kenya – Steps towards reaching the millennium development goals (MDGs)

Pacifica F. Achieng Ogola, Brynhildur Davidsdottir, Ingvar Birgir Fridleifsson
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Volume 15, Issue 8, October 2011, Pages 4067-4079

Abstract

Access to modern energy services is key to economic development and progress towards millennium development goals (MDGs). Yet only 20% of Kenyan population of which 5% are rural residents have access to electricity. The study focuses on East Pokot and Marigat Districts, commonly known as Baringo eastern lowlands within the Kenyan Rift Valley. The two districts lie at the end of a 190 km high voltage line from Lessos substation in Nandi District, which traverses rough terrain and serving major towns before reaching the study area. Extension of the line has also been hampered by several barriers discussed in this paper. Consequently, less than 1% of the households in small trading centres have access to electricity with an average consumption of 120 kWh/month and 500 kWh/month per utility in the commercial sector. About 60–70% of the local population live below the poverty line and micro, small and medium enterprises are not well developed due to inadequate supply of electricity and poverty. The area lies within undeveloped six geothermal prospects between Lake Bogoria and Silali with an estimated resource potential of about 2700 MWe. Since the current government focus is to develop the geothermal resources in the area, the study assess the overall impact of the planned development in contributing towards the attainment of the millennium development goals (MDGs).

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