October 6 2015 at 09:38am
By Nicolette Dirk Comment on this story
Cape Town – Twenty thousand jobs have been created by renewable projects in South Africa and these projects have attracted R192.6 billion in investment, Energy Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson said when she announced 10 preferred bidders in the Small Projects Independent Power Producer Programme.
She said Adams Solar PV Project (Pty) Ltd, Bellatrix Solar PV Project, Du Plessis Solar PV4, Steynsrus PV2, Heuningspruit PV1, Steynsrus PV1, Klawer Wind Farm, Hopefield Community Wind Farm, George Small Scale Biomass to Energy and Busby Renewables (Biomass) had made the cut.
The announcement was made at the South African International Renewable Energy Conference’s (SAIREC) welcoming reception ahead of the three-day conference being held at Cape Town International Convention Centre. So far the initiative has contributed 4 294GWh to the national grid, while total payment to Independent Power Producers stands at R9.2 billion. It has also saved 4.4 million tons of carbon dioxide.
The programme was created to contribute towards socio-economic and environmentally sustainable growth, and stimulate the renewable industry in South Africa.
At the event, Joemat-Pettersson said South Africa’s renewable programme was not only about electricity but also broader empowerment.
“The contribution of these projects to the broader national development objectives – including economic development, social upliftment, job creation, BBBEE and development of small and women-owned vendors – is a hallmark of the programme and it is these contributions that we are watching with pride,” she said.
The Independent Power Producers Programme would also support local small and medium-size entrepreneurs. The programme targets projects in the 1MW to 5MW range.
“The intention of this programme is to assist small developers in gaining experience in project development as well as in raising the necessary funding for projects of this nature.”
She said renewable projects in South Africa had resulted in 20 000 jobs being created and had attracted R192.6 billion in investment.
A further R19.9bn had been pledged by Independent Power Producers towards initiatives in communities in which they operated.
The Department of Energy is hosting SAIREC 2015 until tomorrow in conjunction with the South African National Energy Development Institute (Sanedi) and the Renewable Energy Policy Network for the 21st Century (REN21), with support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Co-operation and Development (BMZ).