When you are in Kenya, you either pay the bill for the all drinks you have had with friends or all your drinks get paid for with one of your more moneyed friends. That is pretty much the culture here. So a few weeks ago, when a friend from Britain invited me for a drink at Sankara Hotel to discuss to discuss Kenya’s energy regulations 2012, I was shocked when he left and only paid for his two drinks. Luckily I had “backup” to pay for my bill though it pretty much left my pocket dented.
From our discussion, my British friend was more amazed as to how stringent the energy regulations were in Kenya. In fact to him, Kenya’s regulations were the most stringent he has ever seen and also offered the most opportunity for the energy industry. He left me pondering on why exactly he felt so and so the last two weeks I have looked deeply into the regulations and attended a few meetings on the same.
Earlier this week I was invited for a stakeholder’s meeting by ERC on the energy regulations. The main agenda was to look at how we can develop an energy curriculum to ensure that we license more energy auditors. Currently, we only have 16 licensed energy auditors. The country would need at least 300 energy auditors to audit the more than 3000 facilities that have comply with the energy regulations. Most facilities affected with this regulations are currently not aware of these yet they are required to comply with the regulations before 2015. If a facility consumes more than 180,000 kWh of both Electrical and Thermal Energy, they it must be compliant with the energy regulations.
To be compliant you have to follow the following six simple steps;
- Conduct an Energy Audit once in 3 years. You must submit the report at least six months before the end of your financial year.
- Set up an energy management committee and designate an energy officer.
- Develop an energy policy that must be submitted to ERC for approval
- Develop an Energy Investment Plan after the energy audit. This should also be submitted at least six months before the end of the financial year
- Submit Annual Implementation Report to show your level of implementation of the energy audit recommendations
- Record your monthly electricity, water and Fuel bills for a period of at least 5yrs
Compliance basically starts with an energy audit. The energy audit must be done by a licensed ERC energy auditor who will also help in developing the energy management strategy and energy investment plan.
My British friend was more amazed by the penalties involved. Failure to comply with the regulation will attract the following penalties
- One year imprisonment for the facility head
- One million Kenya Shillings fine
- Thirty Thousand shilling per day for delay in submission of the implementation report
This regulations are a carrot and stick approach to compliance. The carrot being that the facility will save energy and reduce its cost while the stick being the penalties. Our energy regulator, ERC, is currently working hard to ensure compliance with these regulations.