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Editorials

For now, it would be wise for us to put all our effort in deepening the clean energy path we have taken. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Because of the high levels of investment, technology and security required to have it operating efficiently, reliably and safely, nuclear power remains one of the most controversial sources of energy around the world.

Yet these very weighty issues do not appear to be moderating Kenya’s determination to acquire the technology and establish own plants. While it cannot be denied that an industrialising Kenya will require massive injection power into the national grid, it should be obvious to us that nuclear would be our very last option.

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This is the reason that this week’s announcement that Kenya has postponed the Sh968 billion investment it wanted to make in nuclear technology is only partly welcome.

Postponing the project by nine years to 2036 is only reasonable to the extent that it will help us assess whether we have the necessary resources to purse this goal or indeed whether it is the most viable source of power. With abundant and growing geothermal, wind and solar resources, perhaps it would be wise to direct whatever resources we have on these.

The bottomline is that the Kenya Nuclear Electricity Board could arguably be considered as one of those cost centres the taxpayer can ill-afford to continue financing. It is surprising that the recent budget cuts and the accompanying painful taxes did not focus on such pockets of public expenditure.

For now, it would be wise for us to put all our effort in deepening the clean energy path we have taken, and most importantly, to reduce our massive debt burden.



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