While Nigeria continues to celebrate power generation of about 5,000 megawatts, another African country, Kenya, has begun moves to build one gigawatts.
While a megawatt is one million watts, a gigawatt is one billion watts.
On Sunday, the Kenyan Ministry of Energy and Petroleum signed a landmark contract with SkyPower, the world’s largest developer and owner of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) energy projects for one gigawatts of world-class solar projects to be built in four phases in Kenya over the next five years.
The monumental US $2.2 billion agreement was signed in Nairobi, Kenya at the sixth annual Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES). Initiated by the U.S. government in 2010, the conference gathers entrepreneurs at all stages of business development, business leaders, mentors and high-level government officials to help increase support for innovators and job creators around the world.
GES 2015 hosted an unprecedented convention of high-level leaders from around the globe, including U.S. President Barack Obama and H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta, President of the Republic of Kenya. SkyPower proudly sponsored the summit as an official Solar Energy Partner.
“Kenya has become an African hub for innovation and entrepreneurship, and SkyPower is proud to contribute to this unprecedented milestone in Kenya’s ambitious renewable energy plan,” said SkyPower President and Chief Executive Officer Kerry Adler. “SkyPower’s solar projects will help Kenya realize its electrification goals, support the development of the country’s renewable energy industry and help the development of strong communities, generating a brighter future for all.”
“We are very pleased to work with a world-leader in solar energy like SkyPower,” said Henry Rotich, Cabinet Secretary of the Kenyan Ministry of Energy and Petroleum. “Sustainable electrification is a central policy issue in Kenya, and we are committed to making this a reality for our citizens, while accelerating economic growth in the process.”
“SkyPower’s US $2.2 billion investment will create more than 25,000 total job years in Kenya and includes 200 MW of fabrication and assembly facilities, as well as a commitment of US $173 million toward education, training, and research and development,” said SkyPower Executive Vice President Charles Cohen.
SkyPower has a long history of working closely with local communities to produce hundreds of millions of kilowatt hours (kWh) of clean electricity every year, while ensuring that those closest to the developments reap the rewards of new jobs, education, skills training and accessible energy.