74 000m² Cape office park goes solar

2014-02-03 14:56
Black River Park. (Sola Future Energy)

Black River Park. (Sola Future Energy)

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Cape Town - With electricity prices increasing substantially commercial sectors are investing in multimillion rand solar systems hoping to decrease the dependence on electricity, an office park in Cape Town is in the process of installing a R22m solar system.

Black River Park is a 74 000m² office space and is home to various brands.

The Black River Park solar PV (photovoltaic) system consisted of an initial 700kW solar-panel arrangement. The second phase will consist of an additional 500kW system that will cover most of the remaining roofs at the park.

Sola Future Energy is behind this initiative and argues that there is enormous worth in PV systems for commercial buildings. Sola’s managing director Chris Haw says that the PV system works especially well with buildings that have high air conditioning consumption.

The system additionally has the "potential" to inject proportions of excess energy into the national grid allowing the park to receive a monetary benefit.

The City of Cape Town has plans in place to ensure this process will happen however according to Sola no date has been given as to when Black Water Park will be able to receive compensation for injecting the energy it produces.

With electricity prices increasing substantially, commercial buildings (such as Vodacom’s Century City solar initiative) are investing in programmes similar to Sola PV systems hoping to decrease the dependence on electricity provided through Eskom. South Africa’s commercial sector consumes up to 37.7% of electricity according to the government gazette on electricity pricing policy of 2008

According to Haw once phase 2 has been completed the Black River Park will save 2.2 million kW per year. That is a 20% saving of the parks electricity per year.

The Black River Park, once completed will be the biggest integrated solar roof project in South Africa with a capacity of 1.2mW. In terms of cost the entire PV system is worth R22m and will require R230 000 in maintenance per year.

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Read more on:    cape town  |  renewable energy

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