County to embrace solar energy

Sunday March 20 2016

Munene Mwikumi charging his phone using solar energy. Tharaka-Nithi County is planning on using solar energy to light homes. FILE PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Munene Mwikumi charging his phone using solar energy. Tharaka-Nithi County is planning on using solar energy to light homes. FILE PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By ALEX NJERU
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Tharaka-Nithi county will use solar energy to pump underground water to generate electricity.

Speaking in Tunyai on Saturday where he commissioned a Sh1.3 million solar powered domestic water pump, Physical Planning, Energy and Lands chief officer Sebastian Mwangangi said “we are determined to use heat from the sun in changing lives of the locals.”

The project is funded by USAID and the county government.

A report released by Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, he said, placed the county in position three nationwide with the best sun heat to produce electricity.

He said his department has already engaged experts to know how best to utilise the resource.

He noted that there is enough sun heat all year round in most parts of the county, which could cut the cost of using electricity and fuel.

Mr Mwangangi said a recent meteorological report on climatic change observed that there is a need to embrace the use of solar energy owing to an increase in sun heat.

The official said water capacity in most of the rivers in the country is decreasing hindering production of enough electricity due to climate change.