Google is reportedly in talks to back the largest wind power project in Africa

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Google is in talks to invest in the largest wind power project in Africa.

According to CNBC, Google wants to back Kenya's Lake Turkana Wind Power Project, a massive undertaking that will require more than $700 million.

The project will span 40,000 acres, raise Kenya's energy capacity by 20 percent, and be an enormous boon to a country where less than 25% of the population has access to power.

Though most of Google's green energy investments have been within the United States, it has invested in Africa before — most notably in 2013 when it poured $12 million into a South African solar project, one of the largest on the continent.

wind turbine sunset

Kwame Parker, Standard Bank's head of power and infrastructure for East Africa, told CNBC that Google's global profile would send ripples beyond Turkana itself. Google's investment would be "a significant vote of confidence for investors considering African power market entry," he said.

But that's not the only impact this investment could have. It could also help secure a $250 million investment based on President Barack Obama's Power Africa initiative. To receive the government investment, the Turkana project would require "meaningful involvement of the U.S. private sector," which Google's investment would likely satisfy.

Google also has significant interest in wind power on the technology side. Its innovative arm, Google X, is currently developing the potential next phase in wind energy production. Google's Makani wind turbines fly in the air like kites to utilize the strong winds available at higher altitudes.

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Google is reportedly in talks to back the largest wind power project in Africa
Photo taken on April 12, 2012 shows a part of the Masinga hydro-electricity dam at Masinga, approximately 230 kilometres north of Nairobi, that is part of a series of dams known as the seven-forks dams that are the country's main electricity generators. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on April 12, 2012 shows the Masinga hydro-electricity power plant at the Masinga dam, approximately 230 kilometres north of Nairobi, that is part of a series of dams known as the seven-forks dams that are the country's main electricity generators. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on March 26, 2012 shows results of drought at Athi River, approximately 30 kilometres southeast of Nairobi. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on March 26, 2012 shows people walking across a bridge over a dried-up river bed at Athi River, approximately 30 kilometres southeast of Nairobi. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on April 12, 2012 shows the Masinga hydro-electricity dam at Masinga, approximately 230 kilometres north of Nairobi, that is part of a series of dams known as the seven-forks dams that are the country's main electricity generators. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on May 25, 2012 shows young Samburu herder, Nepiyian Leporongos, 14, grazing her family's sheep during the day before attending evening lessons in solar-lit classrooms at Loltulelei primary school, a volunteer programme by local teachers targeting the young who are by day shepherds of their families livestock and therefore unable to attend day-school at Kisima in Samburu county, approximately 350 kilometres north of Nairobi. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP. AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on May 25, 2012 shows young Samburu shepherdess Nepiyian Leporongos, 14, grazing her family's sheep during the day before attending evening lessons in solar-lit classrooms at Loltulelei primary school, a volunteer programme by local teachers targeting the young who are by day shepherds of their families livestock and therefore unable to attend day-school at Kisima in Samburu county, approximately 350 kilometres north of Nairobi. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecasted to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP. AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
Photo taken on March 26, 2012 shows a dried-up river bed at Athi River, approximately 30 kilometres southeast of Nairobi. Only about 18% of Kenyan households have access to power, according to the United Nations Environment Programme, where peak demand for electricity has increased to 1,200MW and is forecast to reach 15,000MW by 2030. Over-reliance on hydro-generated energy, that supplies 60% of the national requirement, has meant severe gluts in daily supply and expansion countrywide due to changes in climatic patterns that in recent years has seen the eastern Africa region suffer catastrophic droughts owing to numerous failed rains. An ambitious windfarm project on the shores of Lake Turkana in the semi-arid north, the biggest project of its kind in Africa, is expected to provide 300MW of low-cost power to the national grid - equivalent to about 20% of the current installed electricity-generating capacity - combined with the expansion of geothermal electricity generation in the Kenyan rift-valley, where there is now a near-term target of about 1,300MW along with the potential of solar energy in Kenya which has hardly been tapped yet, Kenya could become a zero-emission economy in the field of electricity generation over the coming years by some estimates, says the UNEP . AFP PHOTO/Tony KARUMBA (Photo credit should read TONY KARUMBA/AFP/GettyImages)
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