22 May Drilling works at Galla Le Koma geothermal field to begin next month
Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen), a parastatal company and the largest electric power producer in Kenya has revealed that preparations are 80% complete and that the actual drilling works at the Galla Le Koma geothermal site located in Lake Assal region, central Djibouti, shall commence in June.
This comes approximately three months since the Nairobi, Kenya-based Company signed US$ 6.5m contracts with Office Djiboutien de developpement de l’energie geothermique (ODDEG), or rather the Djiboutian office of geothermal energy development), to carry out the project.
KenGen will drill a total of three geothermal wells that will produce an overall power of 15 MWe in this particular field. The wells are a part of a pilot project with which the authorities of this East African country aim to test the geothermal potential of the Lake Assal region.
The project is subsidized by the Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development (KFAED) together with the Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development (Fades).
What follows after the pilot project?
Following the completion of the said pilot project, the Djibouti government plans to entrust the development of the geothermal program in the Lake Assal region to Independent Power Producers (IPP).
The development of this program is supported by the African Development Bank (AfDB) through a US$ 24.73M loan so far. Back in July 2013, the pan-African bank lent Djibouti US$ 6.83M, followed by US$ 14.68M in 2016 and US$ 3.22M last year.
Apart from Lake Assal, Lake Abbe is another promising region as far as geothermal development is concerned. According to ODDEG, the two geothermal sites have a combined potential of 5,000 MWe, the exploitation of which would propel the East African country to the forefront of renewable energy-producing countries in the continent.
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