Kenya: GDC receives $19m grant for Baringo-Silali geothermal project
Geothermal Development Company (GDC) has received a boost for its drilling operations after the Geothermal Risk Mitigation Facility (GRMF) awarded the government a grant of Sh1.9 billion ($19 million).
The funds are meant for geothermal exploration in the larger Baringo-Silali block. This grant is seen as a major boost to the power sector in Kenya where geothermal energy is tipped to lower power tariffs.
“The award of the funds is a strong demonstration of confidence in GDC and also in geothermal as the energy of the now and the future,” said GDC Managing Director Johnson Ole Nchoe in a statement.
An accelerated geothermal sector is a great economic enabler in support of various government development projects including the Big Four and Vision 2030, he added.
Currently, GDC is drilling for geothermal steam at Paka. In August, the company struck a successful first well that confirmed the area as productive.
The entire Baringo-Silali project is estimated to have 3,000 MW of geothermal steam.
GRMF is a funding programme that focuses on the geothermal development in East Africa. It is hosted and managed by the African Union Commission and is focusing on 11 countries along the Rift Valley, among them Kenya.
The model of the grant is output based reimbursable – meaning that GDC will be refunded every time it completes a well. The refund is approved after certification by an independent consultant.