Developing renewable energy in Kenya
Mumias Sugar Company (“MSC”) , a listed Kenyan company and the country’s biggest sugar producer, controls almost 60% of market share. MSC is a sugar-producing entity based on an association of planters that own practically all of the sugar cane fields.
Due to the future opening of the Kenyan sugar market to imports from Comesa countries (phasing out of import quotas from 2010) and extremely high and uncompetitive production costs, MSC has set out to review its production policy and diversify its activities. This includes implementing a sizeable bagasse cogeneration project.
This project is in line with AFD Group’s ongoing operations to develop the renewable energies sector by promoting the implementation of biomass cogeneration units in Kenyan agro-industrial companies.
MSC installed its first bagasse cogeneration power plant in 2000 with the aim of meeting the company’s energy needs. MSC today operates a 15 MW power plant which makes it almost totally energy independent. Since May 2005, MSC has been selling a 2 MW production surplus to the national electricity supplier KPLC. This positive experience has led MSC to pursue the development of this activity by creating a new power plant.
The project for a new cogeneration power plant meets the following objectives:
>> to raise the electricity generation capacity in order to increase sales to KPLC;
>> to diversify the company’s income;
>> to use the bagasse surplus that is currently unused;
MSC will consequently have a 35 MW generation capacity, including 10 MW to ensure the company’s energy independence and 25 MW that will be sold to KPLC.