Sunday, April 19, 2015

South Africa to Double Clean-Power Plans as New Bidders Named

Norwegian solar power producer Scatec Solar has been awarded a preferred bidder status by South Africa’s energy department to build three solar plants in Northern Cape. (Image Credit: USACEHQ/Flickr) Click to Enlarge.
South Africa said it plans to more than double the amount of renewable power it gets from private companies by securing a further 6,300 megawatts as it named preferred bidders for contracts to build 13 clean-energy projects.

Scatec Solar AS, Biotherm Energy, Sappi Ltd., Sun Edison LLC and Enel Green Power were among the companies provisionally selected to build solar, wind, biomass and hydroelectric plants that will add 1,121 megawatts of power to the national grid,the Department of Energy said in a statement.  Financing for the projects should be completed in the fourth quarter, with plant commissioning due to start in November 2016.

“This brings it to a total of 79 projects approved by the Department of Energy with a capacity of 5,243 megawatts” in four of five bid rounds, Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson told reporters in Cape Town Thursday.  “This represents a massive investment of 168 billion rand ($14 billion) in economic infrastructure in our country.”

South Africa is looking to tap new sources of energy and encourage more private companies to become involved in generation as power demand exceeds supply.  State utility Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., which supplies about 95 percent of the nation’s electricity, has implemented rolling blackouts for the past five days to avert a collapse of the national grid.

Read more at South Africa to Double Clean-Power Plans as New Bidders Named

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