The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has endorsed Kenya’s application to include nuclear power in its energy mix, according to ESI Africa.
Last week Thursday, the IAEA presented the mining cabinet secretary, Dan Kazungu, with a four-year long nuclear energy review on Kenya’s nuclear power application.
According to the media, the planning for nuclear power dates back to 2012, conducted under the leadership of the Kenya Nuclear Electricity Board.
“Kenya should utilise nuclear power for it to become a middle-income country in the future,” said Mikhail Chudakov, the IAEA’s Deputy Director General.
The report of the comprehensive assessment, known as the Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review, indicates that the country has made advances, such as conducting a feasibility study, which addressed the 19 main issues considered in a nuclear energy programme.
“Kenyans do not fear nuclear power, especially since it can have a very positive impact on tariffs. What they fear is safety concerns that can be allayed by public sensitisation,” Kazungu noted.
The media reported that the issues that were addressed included funding, safety and security, stakeholder and industrial involvement, human resource development, legislative and regulatory framework, electric grid, nuclear power plant site and supporting facilities, radiation protection and radioactive waste, among others.
Energy cabinet secretary Charles Keter, in a speech delivered on his behalf by the chief geologist in the ministry of energy and petroleum, John Omenge said: “Let me reiterate the ministry’s unwavering support and encouragement for the nuclear power programme.”
“To the deputy director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency, please relay the message of our commitment to implement the recommendations in your report.”
Omenge continued: “This report gives us the impetus to proceed toward the next stages and gives the government a good framework of the actions and issues requiring further development.”
The media also reported that Kenya plans to set up its first nuclear power plant with a capacity of 1,000MW by 2027, which is estimated to rise to a total of 4,000MW by 2033.