- Sedibelo Platinum's subsidiary, Pilanesberg Platinum Mines, plans to source 75 MW of its power from two renewable energy projects.
- The first project is a combination of solar PV and wind systems and will be operational from 2024.
- The projects will allow the mine to reduce carbon emissions by 45%.
Sedibelo Platinum's subsidiary, Pilanesberg Platinum Mines, plans to procure 75 MW of renewable energy.
Pilanesberg Platinum Mines - which is located 60km northwest of the mining town Rustenburg in the North West province, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with renewable energy project developers - the juwi/Sturdee Energy consortium. They will develop two renewable energy projects for the mine.
Sturdee Energy has delivered over 600 MW of solar projects across Sub-Saharan Africa - mainly South Africa, Botswana and Namibia.
Founded in Germany in 1996, juwi has experience in wind, solar energy and hybrid systems with storage facilities. It has projects worldwide - over 1 000 wind systems and about 1 800 solar PV systems. These energy systems provide about nine billion kilowatt-hours of electricity a year; or meet the demand of around three million households in Germany.
The parties will next engage in negotiations for the relevant power-purchase agreements.
The first project combines solar PV and wind systems - providing 40 MW to the mine via wheeling from Limpopo and Western Cape. This project will supply as much as 60% of the mine's energy needs. It is expected to be operational by 2024.
The second project is a 35 MW solar plant at or next to the mine, which will provide energy to it directly. This project will be operational from 2026.
The projects are expected to allow the mine to reduce carbon emissions by 45%, take pressure off the Eskom grid and allow for "significant" cost savings, according to Sedibelo.
Lael Bethlehem, Sedibelo's chief ESG officer, noted the impact of regulatory changes last year allowing a licence exemption for generation facilities of 100 MW.
"When President [Cyril] Ramaphosa announced that companies would be able to generate their own renewable power up to 100 MW, he unleashed tremendous opportunities which are impacting positively on the environment, on business and on the economy, while also taking pressure off the grid," said Bethlehem.
The mining industry has 3.9 GW of green energy projects in the pipeline, worth R60 billion.