House energy committee roots for nuclear power as reliable alternative

Kenyan MPS from the Energy Committe led by the chair of delegation Kajiado North MP Mr Joseph Manje(Third Left), Kenya Nucleaur Board(KNEB) CEO Collins Juma(Second Right ) and KNEB'S Director, Publicity & Advocacy Basset Buyukah (Right) while in Sochi, Russia during the 10 anniversary AtomeXpo.(James Wanzala,Standard)

The Parliament Energy Committee is now rooting for nuclear energy to drive achievement of President Uhuru Kenyatta's Big Four and the Vision 2030 agenda.

The committee resolved this after attending the AtomeXp nuclear energy conference in Sochi, Russia, last week which ran on the theme Global Partnerships - Joint Success.

"We have been educated on nuclear issues. The myth that we had heard about nuclear that is explosive and can bring calamity to our country is now clear to us," said Kajiado North MP and head of delegation, Joseph Manje.

Nuclear power is the safest source of energy and is available when needed, he added.

“We have also seen how big players like Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation are controlling this kind of power in the world and when we go back home, we will come up with structures that govern this issue," said Mr Manje.

During the previous Parliament, the Energy Bill did not sail through hence derailing efforts to adopt nuclear power as the alternative source of energy.

"This time round we have got it right because we have started with educating MPs on the advantages of this source of energy and when we go back home, we will educate our people," said the MP.

On financing the capital intensive project, Manje said it is Kenya's responsibility and the long-term benefits would be realised in the near future.

Kenya plans to have an energy mix apart from geothermal, hydro, solar and wind by putting up a $20 million (Sh2 billion) nuclear power plant by 2023.

The MPs said for Kenya to be industrialised and create jobs, it will have to adopt nuclear power which is consistent in supply.

"Our push as a committee is that it's time for a Kenyan renaissance and to diversify energy sources so as to turn our country into a manufacturing hub and create jobs," said Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo.

Kenya Nuclear Board Chief Executive Collins Juma said the future of energy and base load generation is in nuclear and probably coal, but after the Paris conference capping on coal, it leaves the country with nuclear and liquefied natural gas as viable alternatives.

By David Njaaga Sep. 22, 2022
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