Cape Town Unveils R1,2 Billion Solar Plant to Combat Loadshedding

A R1,2 billion solar PV plant is being designed and built in Cape Town. The PV plant aims to mitigate some of the effects of loadshedding.

The PV plant was announced by the City of Cape Town and is one of two projects that has received funding. The solar plant project will have enough battery storage to shield the city from at least one stage of loadshedding.

The plant will be located in Paardevlei (just outside Somerset West) and will yield up to 60MW of renewable energy. Cape Town Mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis said: “This project is another critical step in our journey away from Eskom reliance and towards a load-shedding-free Cape Town.

“We are confident that Cape Town will be the first metro to free our economy from power disruptions and ensure a green and just energy transition.”

The plant will receive a feasibility study from the C40 Cities Finance Facility (CFF), which offers cities financial assistance in support of a green and just transition. The study is expected to be completed by the end of 2023. The full commissioning of the plant is estimated to happen by August 2026.

This project will receive support from the CFF, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group.

 The City also announced a 500MW tender to buy power on the open market and their Power Heroes Programme tender, which will help residents save energy via an automated remote that turns off power-intensive devices during peak times.

If all goes according to plan, Cape Town will become the first city in the country to provide residents and businesses cash for power from their solar PV systems.

Source: City of Cape Town website.

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