South Africa Seeks New Bids for 3,200 Megawatts of Green Energy
By Mike Cohen - Oct 29, 2012 4:54 AM PT
South Africa said it will open a new bidding round for alternative
energy projects that should add an additional 3,200 megawatts of power
to the national grid in Africaï¿½s largest economy by 2020.
The government is targeting 1,470 megawatts from onshore wind
projects, 400 megawatts from concentrated solar power and 1,075
megawatts from solar photovoltaic projects, Energy Minister Dipuo
Peters said. Biomass and biogas projects should each generate 47.5
megawatts, small hydropower projects 60 megawatts and other small
projects 100 megawatts, she said.
ï¿½The South African government is committed to renewable energy as part
of our energy mix,ï¿½ Peters told reporters in Pretoria today.
The country is expanding electricity supply after state-run Eskom
Holdings SOC Ltd., which generates most of its power from coal,
suffered shortages in 2008, leading to mine closures. Besides
increasing the supply of renewable energy, the government wants to
produce 2,500 megawatts more energy from coal and 2,609 megawatts from
hydropower by 2024, and 2,562 megawatts of extra gas power by 2025.
The power supply program has been approved by the National Energy
Regulator and the necessary government directives will be published by
year-end, Peters said.
The government approved 28 wind, solar and hydropower projects costing
47 billion rand ($5.4 billion) last December and 19 proposals valued
at 73 billion rand in May, while a third bidding round is set to be
concluded in May.
Companies selected to supply 1,275 megawatts of power in the first
round have concluded financing arrangements, which were stalled by
delays in obtaining government approval, Peters said. The funding
arrangements were supposed to be completed by the June 30.
The bidding process ï¿½introduced a whole new procurement framework,ï¿½
she said. ï¿½On behalf of government, allow me to apologize for the
delays. I am confident that going forward the process will be much
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