Actis backs first phase of South Africa’s renewables programme
Actis, the pan-emerging markets private equity firm, has signed key financing and government agreements in the construction of three renewable energy projects in South Africa.
Actis portfolio company Globeleq is part of the consortium building the 138 megawatt (MW) Jeffrey’s BayWind Farm on the Eastern Cape, the 50 MW photovoltaic (PV) solar farm in De Aar, and the 50 MW PV solar farm in Droogfontein, both in the Northern Cape.
Construction will commence shortly and the plants are expected to be fully operational by mid-2014.
Once up and running the projects will produce enough electricity to light 48,000 households and will displace approximately 628,000 tons of carbon emissions.
Torbjorn Caesar, co-head of energy at Actis and chairman of Globeleq, says: “Coal fired generation currently contributes approximately 80 per cent of installed capacity in South Africa. This programme marks a major shift in the country’s commitment to limit carbon emissions and will make a tangible difference to the lives of tens of thousands of South Africans. Actis is backing Globeleq to become the leading private African power business, investing in projects that enhance the efficiency of the energy mix in host countries where the regulatory environment promotes private sector investment.”
To meet growing energy demand and reduce its dependency on coal-fired generation, the South African Government has developed a 20-year Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). The Minister of Energy has determined that 3,725 MW should be generated from renewable energy sources in the first phase of an ambitious 17,800 MW renewable capacity target planned for 2010-2020. Globeleq and its partners were awarded preferred bidder status in the first round of bids that took place in December 2011.
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