SA to sign wind power projects to help ease record load shedding

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South Africa will move ahead with the allocation of three onshore wind stations from a delayed round of bidding to provide renewable power, an initiative intended to help mitigate record levels of power cuts. 

The Coleskop Wind Power, San Kraal Wind Power and Phezukomoya Wind Power developments are ready to be signed off following the receipt of regulatory approvals, the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy said in a statement on Tuesday. Other projects are expected to be finalized at a later date.

A total of 25 wind and solar-power projects worth about R50 billion of investment and forecast to add nearly 2,600 megawatts to the national grid were announced almost a year ago. 

South Africa has suffered a record year for power cuts, with state-owned Eskom unable to meet demand as its fleet of aging coal stations experience frequent breakdowns. The government has rolled out a number of programs to add capacity, but they have been prone to delays.   

The energy department originally planned to reach financial close for the fifth round within six months of announcing the winners on 29 October.

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