In a bold move to zap the life out of frequent power outages, Kenya is putting its foot down – new players in the solar and wind power game must bring their own backup to the party. That’s right, no backup, no greenlight to illuminate the national grid!

The Ministry of Energy is flexing its muscles, announcing plans to enforce a policy that’ll send energy producers without Battery Energy Storage Systems (Bess) to the sidelines. It’s like saying, “If you can’t handle the power, bring your own safety net!”

Just when you thought Kenya was about to turn into a scene from a sci-fi movie, the Kenya Electricity Generating Company (KenGen) steps into the spotlight. Brace yourselves for a 100-megawatt Bess project coming in hot in 2024, all thanks to the World Bank throwing its weight behind it.

The Cabinet is already onboard, giving KenGen the green light to be the pioneer in this electrifying endeavor. According to Wachira, it’s just the beginning. KenGen will lay down the first brick, but they’re eyeing some partnerships (PPPs) to build more battery energy storage systems. Picture this – several Bess storages popping up like mushrooms between now and 2032.

In the ministry’s playbook, the future is all about stability, and they’ve got a policy to prove it.

KenGen, not one to miss out on the action, is speed-dating with the World Bank to fast-track that 100-megawatt Bess project. Peter Njenga, the managing director behind KenGen, chimed in with, ” We have challenges in the grid because of the intermittencies in the wind and the solar and that is going to play a critical role and even support excess generations in geothermal.’’

In the quest for a blackout-free utopia, Kenya is making it clear – bring your backup or be left in the dark. It’s a power move that’ll have everyone in the energy game reaching for their Bess manuals. After all, in Kenya, no battery means no power play!

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