South Africa Signs Solar PPAs For 975MW of Renewable Energy Projects

Preferred bidders were chosen for an additional 860MW of project proposals.

By Chriselle Moraes on
3rd April 2023

South Africa has signed power purchase agreements (PPAs) for a total of 975 megawatts of renewable energy projects.

Preferred bidder status was also awarded on an additional 860 megawatts of proposals under the country's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP).

All the PPAs, together with implementation agreements (IAs), were concluded for 13 projects related to solar photovoltaic (PV) energy. According to a government statement, they were all signed under the fifth bid window (BW5) of the REIPPPP.

The tender for the BW5 projects was launched in April 2021 and led to the selection of 25 projects with preferred–bidder status and a combined capacity of 2,583 megawatts.

With the the signing of agreements for the 13 solar projects, PPAs have now been concluded for about 19 of the 25 wind and solar projects under the fifth bid window, totalling 1,759 megawatts. The 19 projects have a combined investment value of R34.3 billion.

The PPAs include the following projects:

  • Grootfontein PV 1, Grootfontein PV 2 and Grootfontein PV 3. These will be built by Scatec near Touwsriver, in the Western Cape.
  • The Grootspruit and the Sannaspos solar PV projects are being developed by the Engie-Pele Consortium in the Free State, and the Graspan solar PV project is to be built by the same consortium in the Northern Cape.
  • Total Mulilo’s Du Plessis Dam Solar PV 1 project in De Aar, in the Northern Cape.
  • The Kentani, the Klipfontein, the Klipfontein 2, the Leliehoek, the Braklaagte, and the Sonoblomo solar facilities in Dealesville, in the Free State. The Ikamva Consortium of Mainstream, Globeleq, and H1 are developing it.

The construction of these projects is estimated to take 24 months, with the solar farms slated for 'power-on' completion by early 2025.

Preferred bidder status was also awarded on five solar projects totalling 860 megawatts capacity as part of REIPPPP's sixth round. The five schemes, with a total investment amount of R12.1 billion, are:

  • Kutlwano Solar Power Plant - in North West province with a contracted capacity of 150 megawatts.
  • Boitumelo Solar Power Plant - in North West province with a contracted capacity of 150 megawatts.
  • Virginia Solar Park - in Free State province with a contracted capacity of 240 megawatts.
  • Good Hope Solar Park - in Free State with a contracted capacity of 200 megawatts.
  • Doornhoek PV - North West with a contracted capacity of 120 megawatts.

Bid window 6 calls for a new generation capacity of 4,200 megawatts, out of which 1,000 megawatts will be solar energy and 3,200 megawatts will be wind energy. With a targeted 1,000 megawatts of solar PV proposed by the government for the REIPPPP's sixth round, another proposal will fill the remaining solar energy capacity gap.

Top Photo: Project signing ceremony - Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe, signing the PPA’s (@DMRE_ZA Twitter Handle | Department of Mineral Resources and Energy, Republic of South Africa)

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