Enel starts work on R6.5bn wind farms in effort to take SA installed power to 700MW

ITALIAN energy company, Enel, said it had started construction of two wind farms in South Africa for a total investment worth R6.54bn (€400m) which would take total installed capacity in the country to 700MW.

The two plants – the Karusa and Soetwater wind farms – are located in the Karoo Hoogland district of the Northern Cape and will have a capacity of 140MW each. Once completed they will take to five the number of wind farms in Enel’s South African fleet since 2011. The two new wind farms will be commissioned in 2021, Enel said.

“Looking ahead, we are committed to further leverage on the wealth of renewable energy resources in this country, so we can continue to contribute to its sustainable development and to create shared value for our South African stakeholders,” said Antonio Cammisecra, CEO of Enel Green Power, Enel’s renewable energy subsidiary.

Karusa and Soetwater are each expected to generate over 585GWh annually, each avoiding the annual emission of around 611,000 tonnes of CO² into the atmosphere, said Enel. The wind farms will be supported by a 20-year power supply agreement with Eskom which is in line with the government’s Independent Power Producer (IPP) programme.

Enel Green Power has a presence globally with managed capacity of more than 43GW across an energy mix that includes wind, solar geothermal and hydropower, said Enel in a statement.

The Integrated Resource Plan, a government document describing how South Africa’s energy will be sourced until 2030, states that between 2022 to 2030, the country will add 1,600 MW of new wind power capacity to its generation mix every year, equal to 14,000 MW of new capacity in total.

This is in addition to the 1,362 MW of capacity that has already been contracted for delivery between 2019 and 2021.

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