SPE/AAPG Africa Energy and Technology Conference 5 - 7 Dec 2016 Safari Park Hotel Nairobi City, Kenya

Kenya Rift Valley and Geothermal Project Field Trip

Dates: 8 – 9 December 2016
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Duration: 2 Days
Registration: Closed


Field Trip Leaders 

Christopher Scholz
Syracuse University

Sam Abraham
Geothermal Project Manager

The Kenya Rift Valley is one of the best exposed and most thoroughly studied continental rift systems in the world. It is a magmatic-rich rift, and therefore also the site of extensive volcanism and geothermal activity. This field trip begins in Nairobi, and visits areas of the central rift valley. The goals of the trip are to experience the tectonic geomorphology of an active rift, observe some of the major shield volcanoes along the rift axis, visit a modern intra-rift lake, examine Pleistocene syn-rift fills and the dramatic sedimentary facies variability of these systems, and to visit the KenGen Olkaria geothermal site where clean renewable energy is being produced by the Kenyan government.

Highlights of the trip include:

  • Overview and overlook of the rift valley from its western margin at the Kikuyu Escarpment.  The border fault is spectacularly displayed, and along the route are examples of other rift structures including active relay ramps
  • A visit to Lake Naivasha, currently a mid-sized freshwater rift valley lake
  • Hells Gate National Park, with exposures of abundant trachytic and rhyolitic lava flows, as well as abundant African wildlife
  • An optional hike into the lower Njorowa Gorge within Hell's Gate National Park, which exposes mid-Pleistocene syn-rift lacustrine sedimentary deposits
  • The Olkaria Geothermal Station is contained within the park, and adjacent to the geothermal field are exposures of small rhyolites that host the geothermal resource
  • Tour of the geothermal power plant, drilling rigs, and related facilities

Field trip fee includes:

  • Travel from Nairobi to Naivasha and return will be by chartered bus
  • Dinner on the 8 December
  • One-night accommodation at the Great Rift Valley Lodge and Golf Resort  (including breakfast)
  • Lunch boxes & refreshments on the 8 and 9 December