The word geothermal comes from the Greek words geo (earth) and therme (heat). At great depths, temperatures become very high to melt rock, forming magma. The magma heats underground water which is trapped under impermeable rocks to form a geothermal reservoir. These reservoirs are sources of geothermal energy that can potentially be tapped for electricity generation. Therefore, geothermal energy is heat within the earth.
Geothermal energy is referred to as a renewable source of energy owing to the fact that the geothermal heat is continuously produced inside the earth. The heat is also considered to be practically inexhaustible.
Geothermal energy is considered to be a green alternative source of energy because it is naturally produced by the Earth's core and emits very little greenhouse gas emissions that harm the Earth once it's generated into electricity.
Geothermal resources in Kenya are located within the Rift Valley with the country having a combined potential of between 7,000MW to 10,000MW. The resource is spread out in over 23 sites, with three sites – Menengai, Olkaria and Eburru- currently under development, while others are in the exploration stage.
GDC is currently working in two project areas – Menengai and the Baringo-Silali Geothermal Projects.
GDC has added 320 MW from Olkaria to the national grid.
Direct Use refers to the use of geothermal energy for other uses other than generation of electricity. Mostly this phrase is used for thermal energy applications in process heating although uses of other by-products such as gases and mineral products can also be referred to as direct uses.
To apply for training on geothermal resource development at our Geothermal Centre of Excellence, you can send an application to firstname.lastname@example.org
If you work in the areas focusing on empowerment (Youth, Women, and PWDs), education, health and water, you can send your proposal for partnership to email@example.com for consideration
GDC is tasked with exploration, development of steam fields and selling geothermal steam for electricity generation whereas KenGen uses the steam to generate electricity.