Solar e-waste: What is Kenya’s recycling, disposal strategy?

E-waste. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By Daily Nation

Solar school bags, solar energy-producing tiles on school rooftops, solar carports and even off-grid solar energy systems that have been feeding the national grid have placed Kenya on the world map, but behind the sheen, the country stares at an entirely new category of electronic waste — solar e-waste.

Kenya has witnessed exponential growth in the adoption of solar as a viable energy source. In fact, the country is one of the biggest markets for solar home systems in Africa, buoyed by the government’s VAT exemption on all solar photovoltaic (PV) equipment, cutting the cost by 16 per cent.

Moreover, the government’s ambitious target to achieve 100 percent green energy by 2020 and achieve universal access to electricity by 2022 could see the solar industry make a giant leap.

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Already, there are about 750,000 existing Solar Home Systems and the potential for 1.96 million more connections, the Kenya National Electrification Strategy says.

Since 2009, when Kenya was selected as one of the countries participating in the World Bank’s Lighting Africa programme, it has emerged as a regional front-runner on the reach of the off-grid solar market, having bought 2.7 million solar lanterns. Read more>>

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