Australia’s Macquarie Group JV Loses $66M: Furious Kenyan Locals Kill Outrageous Wind Power Project


Kenyans hate them too …


Back in February last year we covered the story of how a wind farm developer’s efforts to steal land from under the noses of Kenyan farmers led to a local uprising, that ended in the murder of an innocent teenage boy.

Since then, local farmers have only intensified their rage in response to more of the same: appropriating land and spearing these things within a few metres of homes.

61MW Kinangop project cancelled
Wind Power Monthly
Michael McGovern
25 February 2016

Thirty-eight GE 1.6MW turbines were due to be installed on the site

KENYA: Two years of militant opposition has spurred the cancellation of Kenya’s 60.8 MW Kinangop wind project, leaving an agreement to install 38 GE 1.6MW turbines stranded.

The project, located in the central county of Nyandarua, “was hobbled by disputes with residents over compensation for land,” said the developer, African Infrastructure Investment Fund (AIIM), now wholly owned by Old Mutual Investment Group, but formerly in a joint venture with Australia’s Macquarie Group.

Local opposition cites the project’s allegedly excessive proximity to local homes — reportedly as close as 20 metres — in violation of regulations.

AIIM claims Kinangop was the first fully licensed, large-scale wind farm to reach financial close in Kenya, sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest wind market outside South Africa.

In May 2014 the start of construction “was prevented by civil commotion […] preventing [the project] from engaging directly with the affected landowners to progress the project,” AIIM said.

“A number of further serious security events” ensued, the company said, “creating an unsafe environment for the team to implement the project.

“Project funds have been depleted and the project can no longer be completed by the existing shareholders,” it added, claiming $66 million in investment has already made.
Wind Power Monthly

kenyan protest2

Kenyan wind farm developer creates ‘unsafe environment’ & locals
return the ‘favour’ with another anger-fuelled ‘security event’.


Here’s how it unfolded.

Sh15bn Kinangop wind park halted as land protests swirl
Business Daily
David Herbling
16 September 2015

Construction of a Sh15 billion ($150 million) wind farm in Kinangop, Nyandarua has been frozen after running into strong headwinds tied to land acquisition.

The proposed 61 megawatt Kinangop Wind Park, backed by Norwegian PE firm Norfund, South African asset manager Old Mutual and Sydney-based fund Macquarie, is on the verge of collapse after locals declined to offer their land for the project.

“Development of the Kinangop Wind Park has been halted,” said James Wakaba, chief executive of KWP in a statement to Business Daily.

Mr Wakaba claimed the stalemate was being “spearheaded by local political leaders’ but did not disclose the next action for the investors.

The wind farm was supposed to be located on the Kinangop plateau but has provoked violent demonstration, including against farmers who have agreed to the deal.

“KWP instead experienced renewed incidents of civil commotion preventing safe access to the site, preventing a safe and secure environment for the team to implement the project,” added.

GE had already delivered 38 turbines each with a capacity of 1.6MW for the project and had already signed a deal to provide maintenance for the Kinangop wind farm for 10 years worth Sh5.8 billion ($58 million).

The Kinangop wind project, proposed in 2012, was scheduled to be completed by mid-2015 and supply power to the grid.

Kenya Power had signed a deal to buy power from Kinangop at Sh12 per kilowatt hour (¢12).

The project is further facing gusts of legal challenges, after some landowners moved to court seeking to stop the construction power plant over claims that the project was fraudulently approved, and that it does not meet the required standards for operation. There is already a court order stopping it.

The development of infrastructure projects such as wind farms, geothermal plants and highways are increasingly being derailed by land acquisition and compensation challenges as land owners dig in for a fat pay.

KenGen was forced to spend Sh580 million in 2013 to resettle families at Olkaria and pave the way for the development of the geothermal field.

Norfund invested Sh1.05 billion (NOK82.7 million) in KWP in 2013. The largest investor in the project however is Africa Infrastructure Investment Fund II, whose shareholders are Old Mutual Investment Group and Macquarie.

Standard Bank Group and its and its local subsidiary CfC Stanbic were the lead arrangers to underwrite $90 million of debt. Equity funding for the project is $60 million.

The Kinangop hiccups is likely to pour cold water on Kenya’s plans to add 5,000MW of mainly renewable energy to the grid in the next four years.

The wind farm is just one of a number of such projects in the country. KenGen itself has done a small one in Ngong. It also intends to develop a huge one in Meru—400 megawatts—where Blueseas is doing a 41 megawatts wind project.

The Sh71 billion Turkana Wind Power is the largest such project on the continent with a capacity 300MW. Rejected by World Bank—which claimed the country had no capacity to absorb that amount of power—it is expected to put the first 90MW of power by end of next year.
Business Daily

kenyan protest3

About stopthesethings

We are a group of citizens concerned about the rapid spread of industrial wind power generation installations across Australia.


  1. Curt Widlund Sweden says:

    Effects of infrasound on people : The Sonic Weapon of Vladimir Gavreau
    Read more at:
    Der unhörbare Lärm von Windkraftanlagen
    The Misuse of Infrasound: Industry, military, and now the cops
    What if there was a weapon whose effects you couldn’t see or hear, but could kill you from a distance of hundreds of metres?
    Fergus Day assesses the disturbing potential of infrasound.
    Bayerisches Landesamt für Umwelt Bayerisches Landesamt für
    Gesundheit und Lebensmittelsicherheit UmweltWissen – Klima und Energie

    Click to access uw_117_windkraftanlagen_infraschall_gesundheit.pdf

    Mind Control und psychophysische Waffen: Folter in Deutschland!
    Nicht-tödliche Waffen? – Ein Interview mit einem kritischen Experten
    A Short History of Sound Weapons Pt2: Infrasound January 14, 2008
    Sonic weapon images
    Vindkraft infraljud images
    Neue Waffe: Infraschall?
    Organ music ‘instils religious feelings’
    Front Public Health. 2015; 3: 31.
    Deadly Vibrations A Brief History of Sonic Warfare
    Wind Farms, Infrasound And The Brain By Neuroskeptic | July 16, 2015 10:33 am
    Acoustic weapons:
    The Real Science On Wind Farms, Noise, Infrasound And Health
    June 11, 2015 | by Con Doolan:

    Witnesses from Ontario Canada

    Search further and spread the information

  2. Michael Crawford says:

    It would be interesting to know who was supposed to pay the subsidy for these things. It seems unlikely the locals and their government would be paying.

    I don’t suppose we are picking up the tab for Macquarie through some “foreign aid” arrangement.

  3. Terry Conn says:

    Macquarie Bank resents the fact that rural landholders believe they ‘own’ the land they occupy and should be able to have some say on what happens on it, especially if it is impacted by something that happens ‘next door’ – these are people who think they are ‘elites’ that should control how everything works – how do I know? because I have had discussions with some of them, some of whom have been to ‘elite’ private schools funded by ‘rural’ parents yet they have contempt for the values of these parents who understand the same environment they are so happy to destroy simply to harvest ‘subsidies’ that then allow them to eat, drink and be merry on the fruits of the very same land – some day it will end and these so called ‘African Peasants’ will be the heroes, simply because they are ‘correct’ and ‘Macquarie Bank’ is suffering from ‘delusions of grandeur ‘ and ‘self importance’ derived from the belief it is ‘born to rule’ and ridicule and demean the grass roots people who know a hot potato when they see one.

  4. Wikipedia mentions during a period between 1952 to 1960 any African could be shot on sight if entering ‘the white highlands’ which included Kinanpop Plateau; which borders the beautiful Lake Naivasha, home of 400 different species of birds including flamingos. Land on the Plateau has been improved after the decadent behaviour of the white settlers and been carefully tended by Kikuyu farmers. Following this history, I don’t blame them in the slightest for their reaction to this wind farm. No social licence to operate here either proponants. Wega Afrika.

  5. Jackie Rovensky says:

    Macquarie has had its hands in the South American Continent as well, bullying and walking over regulations as if they don’t count., going ahead with a project even when told they could not. Destroying forests where people have lived for 1,000’s of years, and these are people who don’t want electricity – as if they were ever going to be connected anyway! Macquarie is an embarrassment.

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