Kenya – The Kenyan government has finally started to enforce a 2012 law requiring new residential and commercial property developments to install solar water heating facilities.
The Energy (Solar Water Heating) Regulations, coming into effect after a five-year grace period, now mean that buildings with hot water requirements in excess of 100 litres per day must install solar heating systems. This was announced at the beginning of May 2017 by Kenya’s Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) which also stressed its resolve to enforce the regulations.
“From May this year, we will start enforcing the regulations and we expect full compliance,” said Robert Oimeke, ERC acting director general.
The enforcement of the regulations comes at a time that Kenya is making strides towards implementing green economy strategies aimed at realising sustainable development.
The country hopes to cut down carbon dioxide emissions by up to 15% by the year 2030.
Commenting on the new developments, Agnes Kimani, Chloride Exide Kenya marketing manager, said, “The national grid is feeling the strain of increased demand and we expect solar to ease the pressure.”
The enforcement of the regulations should see Kenya surge ahead as a leader in the usage of clean energies across the East African region.
Kenya, like most East African countries receives some of the highest levels of solar radiation globally. However, solar energy exploitation has ever been very low in the country.
The minimal exploitation of solar energy in Kenya is now set to change as the Energy Regulation will require residential premises, educational and health institutions, hotels and lodges, restaurants, cafeterias and other eating places and laundries to have water heaters.
The Kenyan government has warned that property developers who fail to abide by the Energy Regulation may face imprisonment for a year or a fine of $ 10 000. In addition, defaulting buildings will not get connected to the national power grid.