Migori County is set to boost the fight against Climate Change digitally.
With the help of United Kingdom-based RICARDO, the county has developed an energy mapping tool.
The tool will help the county map out forms of energy used by the residents, and make informed intervention decisions on reducing carbon emission.
The system tool will enable the county to map energy systems across all eight the eight Sub Counties under the county decentralization energy systems (CODES) programme.
“The concept is to empower the county to make informed energy decisions through the use of this ‘decision-making’ tool”Nyaoro
The system tool
Speaking during the launch, CODES project lead Jacqueline Nyaoro said the project is in recognition that the best usage of energy is got from where it is used.
Nyaoro stated that this has been the reason for bringing the resource closer to users, and thus the concept of energy centralization.
“The concept is to empower the county to make informed energy decisions through the use of this ‘decision-making’ tool,” she said.
She explained that the tool will enable the county to collect all the information about energy usage within the region.
This is in addition to knowing how many resources the county needs to be able to tap and distribute electricity energy closer to the users.
The tool is primarily focusing on the electrification side while also considering aspects of cooking fuel.
Concurrently it will cover all the cross-sectoral sectors within the county, particularly health and water.
Nyaoro stressed that efforts to tame climate change were going to cost more than 3% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Therefore, there was a need to look at energy as the biggest enabler in terms of energy efficiency.
The chair of the Kenya Climate Change Group (KCCWG) John Kioli while speaking on the same, stated that the tool is very vital for the county.
Koili added that through the tool, they will be able to identify energy projects scientifically.
“I am proud to say that we have now a one-stop tool system that we can use to identify projects scientifically to put money in the energy sector,” said Kioli.
He outline that the tool will also identify which project needs to be solar-powered or connected to hydropower.
“We want to influence the community to think on the need of using briquettes instead of firewood”Majiwa.
Addressing climate change
County Chief Officer of Water and Energy Phidale Majiwa said that Migori is an identified strong potential user of solar energy.
This is evident in several water projects across the Sub Counties, which are solar-powered.
Though, he noted that solar energy installation is costly but the maintenance costs are much cheaper than electricity.
Also areas where the county uses diesel Generators, will change to using solar, which is renewable and environmentally friendly.
Consequently, he said Migori is now poised to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to realize clean energy.
Majiwa noted that over-reliance on charcoal fuel has so far led to deforestation and affected the issues around climate change.
To address this, he stated that the energy department had identified various alternative energy sources.
For instance, he noted that Sony Sugar Company has been selling its waste products as far as Makueni County.
Therefore, the county is at an advanced stage of reaching an agreement with Sony to use its waste product in making briquettes.
“Migori County is in the process of getting a huge waste resource from Sony,” he remarked.
“We want to influence the community to think on the need of using briquettes instead of firewood,” furthered Majiwa.
However, he said that in a case where the community needs funding to come up with pollution-free products, banks would chip in to assist with loans.