Kenya Power rattled as more clients opt for solar

Solar power panels

A solar energy specialist explains to customers how solar LED street lighting works. A big shift to solar power by heavy consumers has pushed Kenya Power into deeper dilemma.

Photo credit: File | Evans Habil | Nation Media Group 

What you need to know:

  • Electricity distributor warns that a growing number of top customers are defecting from national grid.
  • The utility firm said some of its industrial customers are gradually shifting to own-generated solar power. 
  • The big shift to solar power by heavy consumers has pushed Kenya Power into deeper dilemma in the wake of excess production of electricity.

The growing shift to solar power systems by heavy-consuming industrialists seeking reliable and cheaper supply has rattled electricity distributor Kenya Power amid thinning revenues.

The utility firm said some of its industrial customers — who account for about 54.8 per cent of its sales revenues — are gradually shifting to own-generated solar power, dealing a further blow to its already dwindling finances.

“The company operated in a challenging environment over the financial year under review, where demand growth at 3.7 percent remained below the projected level of five percent. The dampened demand growth is further compounded with the increased threats of grid defection by the industrial category as decentralised renewable energy options are becoming more available and cheaper," Kenya Power revealed in its latest annual report.

The company got some Sh63 billion from the industrial customers who bought 4,462 Gigawatt hours in the year to June 2019, representing 45 per cent of its total revenue.

The big shift to solar power by heavy consumers has pushed Kenya Power into deeper dilemma in the wake of excess production of electricity.

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