In this part of our series Co-benefits Stories, Cleophas Mecha talks about renewable energy deployment in different regions in Kenya – and their effects. For this series, we have asked energy professionals that have participated in our trainings for their thoughts and experiences on co-benefits of renewable energy in their country.
“Kenya is working towards abating its greenhouse gases emissions by 30% by 2030 to contribute to the global efforts to mitigate climate change. Simultaneously, this will facilitate the attainment of the sustainable development agenda.
Increased adoption of renewable energy is an important step in the attainment of this goal. Kenya is therefore seeking to expand geothermal, solar, wind, and modern biomass such as bio-waste. Such energy sources are available in different regions of the country. For instance, the North-Eastern part of the country has an abundance of solar and wind energy; parts of Nakuru and Naivasha have abundant geothermal energy; and the rest of the country has adequate bio-waste that can be used for bioenergy production. This will promote clean energy technologies and reduce overreliance on traditional fuels such as firewood. To achieve this, there is a need for regulatory policies and public financing. A stable policy environment with clear objectives at the local, regional and national level are important to encourage the smooth transition to renewables. Such policies should also ensure benefit-sharing and build local capabilities which are needed to create employment opportunities on the local, regional and national level.”
Based on insights of the COBENEFITS research group, the Renewables Academy (RENAC) currently conducts trainings in Turkey, Kenya, South Africa and Mexico. Participants learn about co-benefits of renewable energy in climate change mitigation, tools to quantify and communicate social and economic opportunities and policies and instruments to mobilise them.