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Kenya sets sights for nuclear power plant construction starting in 2027

Seeking to boost its energy infrastructure, Kenya has embarked on a journey to build a nuclear power plant, with construction set to begin in 2027.

Justus Wabuyabo, acting CEO of the state Nuclear Power and Energy Agency, confirmed the construction plans on Monday while speaking to Business Daily, a Kenyan business newspaper.

“We will do the bidding stage, as [of] anytime between 2026 and 2027 and start construction in 2027,” Wabuyabo told Business Daily.

He added that they are considering construction of the plant along the Kenyan coast in either the Kilifi or Kwale counties.

This development comes on the heels of a momentous 2021 decision by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) giving Kenya the green light to forge ahead with the establishment of necessary infrastructure for the power plants.

According to the nuclear agency’s strategic plan for 2020-2024, Kenya’s ambitious journey towards construction of a nuclear power plant aligns seamlessly with Africa Agenda 2063.

Agenda 2063 is a continental development framework designed to propel Africa into a prosperous and sustainable future, placing a strong emphasis on energy access, infrastructure development, and environmental sustainability.

The strategic plan notes that the decision to embrace nuclear power is underpinned by Kenya’s burgeoning energy needs and the global imperative to transition toward sustainable, eco-friendly energy sources.

The nuclear plant is projected to produce 1,000 megawatts, with the entire project estimated to require funding ranging from around 500-600 billion Kenya shillings (about $3.39 billion to $4.07 billion).

Kenya boasts one of the world’s largest geothermal power capacities, producing over 800 megawatts of clean and sustainable electricity from its abundant geothermal resources in the Great Rift Valley.

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