Kenya: Mariakani, the 400/220 kV substation, is set to allow supply of more levels of geothermal power to the coastal economy, according to Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (KETRACO).
Construction is set for completion in October 2020. “Mariakani substation will offer reliable and stable power supply to the proposed Dongo Kundu Special Economic Zone area through the 220kV Dongo Kundu – Mariakani transmission line,” said FCPA Fernandes Barasa. Step-down substations, such as the Mariakani facility, reduce the voltage of incoming electricity from power plants to lower levels suited for homes and businesses.
The rapid development registered in the electricity sector in the last six years revealed the need for additional system reinforcement through extension of the 400 kV network for the safe operation of the Ethiopia-Kenya Interconnector and to absorb the initial 400 MW as per the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA).
Supply of more geothermal and hydropower is expected to steeply cut reliance on expensive diesel generated electricity in the region.
The Mariakani substation contract was awarded to Chinese firm CAMCE and is co-financed by the African Development Bank and the Kenyan government at a total cost of $29 M (Sh2.96 B).
Kenya and Ethiopia are constructing a 1,047km 500kV direct current (DC) bi-pole transmission line which will allow hydropower imports from Ethiopia in line with a State-to-State agreement entered in January 2012.