South Africa: Green Energy to Unlock Massive Investment in South Africa

Pretoria — The Department of Energy says it is expecting R47 billion to be invested in the country through Window 1 of the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPPP).

The department introduced the REIPPP in August 2011, with the first bid submission for Window 1 scheduled for 4 November 2011.

The outline for the first 28 preferred bidders – who were announced on 7 December during COP17 – is now in place and the department says it is ready to sign contracts with the bidders, which will unlock the massive investment.

Window 1, which sought 1 400 megawatts of renewable energy, gave bidders (in wind and solar projects) until June this year to reach financial close, but due to issues – including approvals by government institutions – the date had been postponed.

President Jacob Zuma announced in his State of the Nation Address a massive infrastructure plan comprising various development projects. One of the Strategic Integrated Projects includes green energy in support of the South African economy.

Briefing reporters on Monday, Energy Minister Dipuo Peters said the department had been working closely with the preferred bidders in Window 1 to conclude all contract documentation, including the Power Purchase Agreement and Implementation Agreement.

"The delay for financial close was largely related to government approvals. We apologise for shifting the timeframes," said the minister.

The delays in government approvals were caused by the need to have fully populated contracts to be presented to the relevant structures within government for approval.

"I'm pleased to announce that the country will receive about R47 billion of investment in renewable power generation through Window 1 preferred bidders," said Peters.

The investment will provide job opportunities, especially for those in rural where renewable power plants are located.

According to the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP2010) – which is a 20-year projection on electricity supply and demand – about 42% of electricity generated in South Africa is required to come from renewable resources.

The IRP2010 places specific emphasis on broadening electricity supply technologies to include gas, imports, nuclear, biomass, renewables (wind, solar and hydro), in response to both the country's future electricity needs as well as reduce its CO2 emissions.


via (Tshwane)

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