HomeRegional NewsAfricaWebinar 22 June: Lessons learned from mining minigrids to national grids

Webinar 22 June: Lessons learned from mining minigrids to national grids

Webinar broadcast date: Tuesday 22 June 2021 
Duration: 60 minutes 

12h00 GMT | 13h00 London | 13h00 Lagos | 14h00 Johannesburg | 15h00 Nairobi 

Wind + solar with a slice of energy storage = reliable, dispatchable power that up to now has always been the preserve of fossil fuel generation.  One site, one interconnection, many MW of clean, grid-friendly energy. That is the promise of the hybrid RE system. The new frontier to decarbonisation of the global energy system. 

The idea looks great on paper but in reality, the hybrid grid is a mix of interconnected complexities relating to cost, technology and market drivers. No two hybrid systems are alike. Market drivers – grid constraints, grid stability or fast-response ancillary services – differ from country to country.  

The experience of mines in Africa that are building hybrid minigrids for their own use though could point the way towards decarbonisation of energy systems. The need for reliable own generation has become the mother of invention when it comes to bringing renewable energy into a minigrid at a mine. 

What then are the lessons mines are learning about creating their own renewable energy system and how can these be scaled up by national grids? 

Discussion points 

  • Have developers reached a tipping point where they have enough capacity and capability to work on multiple technologies inhouse?  
  • Have the complexities of interconnection technology and design reached a point where systems can be built on a large scale?  
  • Working up a financial and technical model attractive to mine, investor and developer that limits risk while sharing rewards and can thus be scaled up? 


Dr Thomas Hillig, energy consultant, ThEnergy

Theresa Smith
Theresa Smith is a Content Specialist for ESI Africa.