Kenya will begin constructing a nuclear power plant in 2027, the authorities have said in the latest pledge about the plans.
The 1,000MW plant, which has been in the pipeline for several years, is part of the country’s ambition to move to clean energy and increase energy generation.
Similar statements about the imminence of the start of the project have been made in the past.
The acting CEO of the Nuclear Power and Energy Agency Justus Wabuyabo told Kenya’s Business Daily newspaper that the agency is currently conducting site assessments and finalising preparations to open bids for the plant’s construction.
Mr Wabuyabo said that the plant will be constructed in Kenya’s coastal region over six to 10 years, with the first plant beginning operations in 2034 at the earliest.
Some Kenyans have criticised the plan, claiming that a nuclear plant is unnecessary and the country lacks capacity to handle nuclear waste.
“We have enough resources for hydro, geothermal, solar, and wind power. Worse, I do not think we have the capacity to ensure the safety of a nuclear power plant or clean-up when a disaster strikes,” one X, formerly Twitter, user said.
Currently, South Africa is the only African country that produces nuclear power commercially.
Other African countries have started plans to adopt nuclear energy, including Rwanda and Egypt, which is currently building a $30bn (£24bn) nuclear power plant.