Energy Cabinet Secretary Davis Chirchir who is currently in Manila, Philippines to present Kenya’s bid against six other countries says there is high hope in achieving the dream.
India dropped its bid on Friday leaving Kenya to fight against powerhouses USA, Iceland, Chile, Netherlands, Germany and Philippines.
International Geothermal Association (IGA) has over 5,000 members who are likely to attend the conference if Chirchir’s bid is successful. The World Geothermal Congress due to take place in 2020 will place Kenya in the global map for: investment, tourism, research and development, resource competitiveness etc.
If awarded to Kenya, this will be the first time the congress will be held in the African continent and this will definitely make a positive impact on the geothermal sector in Kenya and whole of Africa.
The bid has been endorsed by the Government of Kenya and supported by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the African Union Commission (AUC). The bid has been endorsed by the Government of Kenya and supported by United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the African Union Commission (AUC).
“My Ministry will offer financial and technical support to ensure successful hosting of the conference. I am convinced that Kenya is the best choice for hosting the World Geothermal Conference 2020. We look forward to receiving the good news,” Chirchir said.
Kenya is ranked first in Africa and ninth in the World with an installed geothermal capacity of 267 megawatts. Approximately1, 700 megawatts (280Mw by June 2014, 100Mw by April 2015 and an additional 1400Mw by 2017) under development. Kenya is one of the most sought for investment markets and supported by various national development banks and international organizations
Kenya has just tested one of the biggest geothermal wells in the world. The well is located in the Olkaria Domes area. This 30MW well is the largest of its kind in Africa and among the top five in the world.
“This discovery underlines the central role renewable energy sources like geothermal will play in powering Kenya’s quest for energy sufficiency. Geothermal is expected to play a key role in the Government initiative to provide additional 5,000 MW by December 2016. The drilling of wells such as this will accelerate the achievement of this goal,” CS Chirchir’s said in his presentation over the weekend.
Kenya is one of the biggest tourist destinations in Africa. It boasts of various features such as the famous Mount Kenya, the Masai Mara, and many more. It is one of Africa’s busiest tourist hubs.
Hosting an event of magnitude will be, major achievement for Kenya and a boost for its tourism sector. International events such as these bring in foreigners who are often ready to explore the country and spend on expeditions during their free time. So hotels, game reserves, wildlife parks, recreation centers , tour operators and other tourist destinations and facilities could have a major business boost if Kenya is successful in its bid.