Category Archives: Reports

COPING WITH EFFECTS OF COVID-19 IN KENYA’S ENERGY SPACE

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The first Inaugural Energy Professionals Round Table in the series of World Energy Day Roundtable events took place on Friday 24th April 2020. This Roundtable brought together Energy Professionals with the key objective of discussing The Effect of COVID19 on the Energy Economy in Kenya.

The Roundtable also sought to highlight and discuss challenges faced and propose mechanisms for change.

In attendance were over 40 Energy professionals from sectors including renewables, energy consultancy, Government bodies, Oil & Gas, academia as well as other non-energy consultancy fields.

TRAINING SURVEY

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Efficient use of resources is necessary for the continuous survival of the human race, but to get there, continuous learning is even more necessary. It is heart-warming to study the results of this survey as what stands out most is
that energy professionals have taken ownership of their own personal development where two-thirds of respondents fund their training needs themselves.

Professionals qualify from institutions that are formed and shaped by similar principles and practices around the world. Most qualifications carry more or less much the same value when compared with each other. To be successful in career and life, survival of the fittest comes into play.

Energy engineering professionals that actively develop an array of soft skills, business skills, together with advancing and keeping their technical skills current will elevate themselves above their peers through continuous learning.

This survey has highlighted that energy professionals self-recognize these requirements, attesting to the preference of international certification programs being sought-after due to the continuous learning requirements to maintain certification.

A concern is the lack of corporate dedication to nurture the skills of their professionals, which could be ascribed to Kenya not having a requirement of and energy management system,where corporates have to conform to continuous
education in energy.

If all professionals in the engineering field actively pursue developing holistic skills sets, the world will experience unimaginable progress and technological advancement to solve the global environmental challenges.

 

WORLD ENERGY DAY 2018 CONFERENCE REPORT

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The World Energy Day Conference was culmination of the weeklong World Energy Day Celebrations
held from 22nd to 26th of October this year. The two-day conference that took place on the 25th
and 26th of October 2018 at the Best Western Meridian Hotel, brought together key players in the
energy sector, visiting speakers from around the globe as well as corporates across various sectors
of the economy, from both the public and private space. The conference was a success and saw the
gathering of industry professionals from the region with an attendance of over 100 delegates. The
conference sought create an invigorating space for these discussions amongst different industry
players and to share knowledge with a view to yielding sustainable next steps. This event was the
culmination of dedicated planning and preparation for all aspects, including programme development,
accommodation and venue logistics, travel and event execution.

The WED conference was first held in 2016 as a half-day conference but has grown over the years to a
fully-fledged two day conference. The holding of this annual conference is seen as a strategic activity
in the energy space specifically corresponding to the need to provide a space for opinion leaders in the
industry to provide thought leadership on energy matters in Kenya, and for delegates to find value in
discussing issues pertaining the industry and providing suitable solutions that progress development.
The conference was flagged off by the president of the Association of Energy Professionals Eastern
Africa and had speakers from Uganda, Tanzania, and South Africa speak on key issues that will shape
the future of energy in Africa.

The conference also served as an excellent platform to crown the winner of the Student Energy
Challenge will be crowned. The student energy innovation challenge as one of the main activities is
planned for students in colleges and universities in aspiration to nurture the next generation of energy
enthusiasts. The eminent panel of judges with business acumen, innovation prowess and energy
expertise, took part in evaluating and ranking the projects. The top three projects walked away with
the prizes that included 3 months internship, mentorship, shopping vouchers, holiday experiences and
cash prizes.

THE TURKANA COUNTY ENERGY BUSINESS, INVESTMENTS AND DYNAMICS

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Since Kenya’s independence, the Turkana region has been marginalized. Its fortuned started changing to the better after the national government inaugurated the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia-Transport (LAPSSET) Corridor project. This was further catalyzed by extensive hydrocarbon resource finds and the development of the largest wind farm in Africa within the region.

This paper seeks to scope the energy resources available in the county. The paper further seeks to elucidate investment and development opportunities available in energy while uncovering inherent challenges facing the sector. The objective of this paper is achieved through interviewing Turkana
County private and public sector stakeholders, conducting surveys and analyzing secondary data.

Hydrocarbons have emerged as a resource that holds most promise with an anticipated USD 3 billion investment on the horizon. The demand of exploration, development, production, and transportation oil & gas products and services continue to significantly increase. Hydrocarbon riparian industries continue to benefit significantly and this phenomenon is bound to increase.

Turkana County and its environs have also in the recent past become a forerunner in green energy development. Geothermal, Wind, Solar and now a candidate for nuclear power plant by 2027 has significantly opened up green and climate change capital inflows. These revenues have significantly boosted energy accessibility and continue to inject much need revenues into the county.

Despite the above Turkana remains to be among the least grid connect midst the 47 Kenyan counties. Much remains to be done in the areas of manpower development and the empowerment of local enterprises to match the current and upcoming energy-related opportunities.

Policies and legislation frameworks needs to fine-tune to continue promoting local content development, equitable energy revenue sharing, and attraction of investment especially in mini-grids and off-grid systems, manpower development, inclusion and participation of constitutionally recognized marginalized groups among other developmental frontiers.

Solar Hot Water Workshop Report

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The solar hot water workshop was conceptualized owing to the need to bring stakeholders in the solar
hot water industry together to discuss the various issues affecting the industry and to map the way
forward for a sustainable future given the current operating environment in the region. The need to
put solar water heating as a centralfocus of attention stems from various interventions in the past five
years that although have created awareness and uptake, still need joint efforts to hit the nationwide
renewable energy targets.

In addition, the need to harness industry knowledge from key renewable energy expert Mr. Eric
Hawkins with vast renewable energy qualifications and business interests in three continents played
a key role in constituting this forum for discussion. Mr. Hawkins who hails from the UK and has been
involved in the design of state-of-the-art solar energy hot water systems, energy storage tanks, and
solar energy knowledge transfer. As the key facilitator, the workshop tapped into his insights on solar
system design, installation and maintenance.

As a result of the Energy (Solar Water Heating) Regulations 2012 requiring all premises with hot
water requirements exceeding 100 litres per day to have solar water heating panels, discussions have
been rife on how to regulate, improve and capitalize on these opportunities as solar practitioners.
The workshop sought create and invigorating space for these discussions amongst different industry
players and to share knowledge with a view to yielding sustainable next steps.

The Energy Regulatory Commission, indicates that an estimated 4 million households need
installation of the Solar Hot Water heating systems in Kenya. This compared against the 160 licensed
professionals who can carry out the installations is very limited in terms of capacity to deliver. The
need for sensitization to increase professional uptake vide the valid certification process, in order to
enhance the human resource capacity for solar installations requires prioritisation. This workshop
was aimed at stimulating key stakeholders to be involved in building capacity as the country moves
towards embracing renewable energy and towards meeting the global energy goals.