The role of Kyoto protocol on energy policies: a case study of the Kenya Energy Sector, 2000-2009
Semo, Noel J
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Kenya, as a party to Kyoto Protocol and other related protocols is committed to responsible international trade. Kenya maintains that despite the fact that global warming is an important issue, it must be handled soberly. There are many unanswered questions on the theory of carbon emissions bringing about global warming. Considering that Kenya is a developing country with the majority of the citizens being poor or average earners it would be hard to implement the National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency initiative. The majority of the gadgets aimed at reducing Green House Gases are costly and most Kenyans cannot afford them. This fact poses the question of whether the Kyoto protocol is relevant in Kenya and whether Kenya's energy sector is facing challenges in the implementation of the Kyoto protocol. This study examines the role of Kyoto protocol on energy policy, to determine the measures taken by the Kenya energy sector in the implementation of the Kyoto protocol and to determine the relevance of Kyoto protocol to the Kenya energy sector. This study used descriptive research design. There are four key institutions in the Kenya energy sector, namely; The Ministry of Energy, Energy Regulatory Commission, The Kenya Power & Lighting Company, Rural Electrification and Independent Power Producers. Each of the institutions has 6 departments and each department has 9 officials working in their head offices. The population of this study was therefore 270. Both primary and secondary data were used in testing the hypothesis and tackling the research objectives of this study. The study found that the main sources of energy used in Kenya are, biomass, petroleum, and the electricity. In terms of quantity, wood fuel is the most used and petroleum is the most important conventional energy source. The government and relevant stakeholders in the sector are actively involved in developing and implementing measures for the abatement of adverse climate change effects and supporting the use of fuel-efficient equipment which is the aim of implementing the Kyoto protocol. The energy sector should take the initiative of encouraging mass transport; tuning of vehicles, improvement of telecommunications of reduce commuting by vehicles; improve traffic management; promote non-motorized transport; include fuel efficiency in driving schools curricula; improve parking arrangements in major towns; improve environmental standard for transit vehicles; and compulsory inspection of all vehicles.