Kenyans without water heaters to face one-year jail term

The government has issued a six-month ultimatum to install the water-heating system or else face a one-year jail term.

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Kenyans whose facilities have not complied with a law requiring them to install solar water heaters have six months to do so.

Those who fail to comply with the regulations of this regulation shall, on conviction, be liable to a fine not exceeding Sh1 million, or to one-year imprisonment, or to both.

The 3.2 million facilities that include hotels, learning institutions, commercial buildings and households are among those targeted following implementation of the Solar Water Regulations 2012.

All premises with hot water requirements exceeding 100 litres per day must install and use solar heating systems.

So far 90 per cent of new buildings have complied with the law, while existing buildings have reported 10 per cent compliance.

“The law requires that before you construct a house, the architectural designs must incorporate solar water heaters. The compliance levels are very high in new buildings because we are working with county governments and planning officials to approve only those facilities that comply with the requirements,” said the Energy Regulatory Commission acting Director General, Mr. Oimeke.

He asked people to embrace solar water heating systems as they cut the cost of electricity by more than 50 per cent in huge commercial buildings and 30 per cent in domestic houses.

“Instead of using electricity to boil water for bathing, it is cheaper and sustainable to use free energy from the sun to heat water,” he said.

Additionally, he said that if there are challenges in installing the systems in an old building, one should apply to be relieved after engineers review the application to ensure it meets the criteria.

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