R1.5bn solar plant opens in Kimberley

2014-05-16 07:30
Droogfontein solar plant.

Droogfontein solar plant.

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Johannesburg - A new R1,5bn solar power plant near Kimberley will contribute immensely to the country's rising energy demands, the department of science and technology said on Thursday.

"Renewable energy holds the promise to improve energy security and access, and to solve other socio-economic challenges that South Africa is facing", Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Michael Masutha said in a statement.

The plant, which is in the Sol Plaatjie Municipality was one of the first large solar farms in South Africa built by an independent power producer, Globeleq.

It was built on a 100ha site on which more than 165 000 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels would be in operation.

The project would supply the Eskom 132 kV gridline and generate 85 458 MW per year.

Droogfontein-workers

This would be sufficient electricity to supply approximately 19 000 average homes each year.

Masutha said the department was focused on setting up systems which would support the sustainable solar energy industry.

"This is done through supporting research, development and innovation in the energy sector, informing and influencing energy policy decisions, and supporting human capital development."

Droogfontein
Read more on:    eskom  |  kimberley  |  renewable energy

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