Factors influencing community participation in geothermal energy project implementation: a case of Menengai geothermal power project in Kenya.
Mading, Peter T
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Through the Kenya Vision 2030 policy, economic transformation is envisioned with plans to expand the energy sector through clean renewable options such as geothermal energy in bid to meet the current and future energy demand. Geothermal prospects in the country occur mainly within the Rift Valley where wide spread volcanic activity and geothermal manifestations signify the existence of geothermal resources, with an estimated potential of between 7000MW to 10,000MW.The country is currently drilling wells for geothermal power in only two areas including Olkaria and Menengai Geothermal Power Projects. Currently, the integration of social concerns into the decision making, planning and management of any geothermal project is a requirement by international agreements/protocols, national laws, policies of bilateral agencies and international financing institutions.However, there is evidence of low community involvement in many countries including Kenya. This could partly explain the existing distance between energy production companies and the local communities. The study was set to determine the influence of information access, income levels, gender aspects and literacy levels on community participation in implementation of Menengai Geothermal Power Project. The study adopted a survey research design. The target population included all the 10656 people from 2545 households in Wanyororo and Kirima sub-Locations in Ndungiri/Kirima Location neighboring the project. Data was collected through administration of a structured questionnaire. The collected data was then processed and analyzed quantitatively. Quantitative analysis used descriptive statistics with the aid of Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 17.0 for windows. The study provided information that will be useful in understanding the factors influencing community participation in geothermal power project implementation with focus in Menengai geothermal project. The findings revealed that majority of the respondents have knowledge about the Company and up 78.7% got the information before Company’s intervention in the area through awareness meetings and those who have had chance to participate in the project activities attribute it to their knowledge about the project. The findings also indicate that majority of the residents who have participated in the project activities their average income is regarded as low. On the influence of gender 33.3% of those who have participated in project activities said that gender was a basis for their consideration. The findings further revealed that 82.0% thought that women participation in the project activities is paramount. On education the findings indicated that 93.7% of the residents who participated in the project’s activities have a minimum of primary education. The study recommend the Company to put up a satellite office near the project to act as a link between the Community for the purpose of information sharing and a place community members can go to when they have concerns that they need to be addressed by the Company. Most importantly, the study recommends the influence of culture and organization factors to be studied in order to understand their influence with regard to community participation in Geothermal Power Project implementation.
xmlui.dri2xhtml.METS-1.0.item-identifier-citationMading,P.T.,2013.Factors Influencing Community Participation In Geothermal Energy Project Implementation: A Case Of Menengai Geothermal Power Project In Kenya.
University of NairobiCollege Of Education And External Studies