EDF Renewables Waainek Wind Farm renewable energy
The Waainek wind farm. Image provided by EDF Renewables.

EDF Renewables (South Africa), subsidiary of international company EDF Renewables is increasing its footprint in the country after being awarded three wind energy projects in the Bid Window 5 of the South African Renewable Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPPP).

To date this year, EDF Renewables has won almost 800MW of projects in South Africa. This is in line with the EDF Group’s CAP 2030 strategy, which aims to double its net renewable energy generation capacity from 28GW to 60GW between 2015 and 2030.

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In October 2021, the consortium consisting of EDF Renewables in South Africa and its local partners H1 Holdings and Gibb-Crede, was awarded Preferred Bidder for three wind energy facilities projects in the Bid Window 5 of the REIPPPP. The Coleskop, San Kraal and Phezukomoya projects, with an installed capacities of 140MW each, are located in the Umsobomvu Local Municipality, on the boundaries of the Eastern Cape and Northern Cape provinces. For these three wind farms, the low-carbon electricity produced each year will help to meet the electricity needs of 420,000 local people.

As per programme requirements, financial close of these three wind projects is scheduled for spring 2022 with the commissioning being planned for two years thereafter.

Earlier this year, EDF Renewables (South Africa) won two other projects. The first was awarded in March. The consortium composed with its partner Perpetua Holding, won the Umoyilanga project in the Risk Mitigation IPP Procurement Programme (RMI4P), developed by the Government. This project will work as a virtual power plant combining solar, wind and battery storage technologies to offer 75MW of dispatchable power to the National Grid. It comprises a 77MW wind farm on the coast in the south of the country and a 138MW solar power plant in the Northern Cape region, which benefits from the country’s best solar irradiation. Both power plants will be equipped with a battery storage system totaling 75MW of power. The low-carbon electricity produced each year will help meet the electricity needs of 124,000 people locally.

The second project was awarded in September of this year. The subsidiary and its partner Pele Green Energy were selected for a first of its kind large corporate solar photovoltaics project, in a tender from mining company Anglo-American Platinum. Through this corporate power purchase agreement, the consortium plans to build and operate a 100MW power plant at the Mogalakwena platinum mine, in the Limpopo province. The low-carbon renewable electricity produced each year to power the mine will replace the high-carbon grid electricity currently used.

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EDF Renewables (South Africa) currently operates four wind farms across the country with a 144MW installed capacity. It includes the Wesley wind farm (33MW) in the former Ciskei area of the Eastern Cape, commissioned in August 2021.

Director of EDF Renewables in South Africa, Tristan de Drouas: “We are pleased to have very significantly expanded our project portfolio in the last 12 months. This success is the result of the intense efforts of the local EDF Renewables team, which has been operating in the country for 13 years. These projects demonstrate our ability to create innovative solutions adapted to specific local expectations of both government and industrial player. They can be launched within a short timeframe and meet South Africa’s objectives of developing low-carbon energy. They will also contribute to strengthening the reliability of the electricity grid.”