ACWA Power has signed an implementation agreement with the South African Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe and a PPA with Eskom regarding its 442 MW solar facility with 1,200 MWh of battery storage located in South Africa’s Northern Cape.
The facility – titled Project DAO – is expected to start operating by early 2026 and “alleviate the Northern Cape congestion,” according to the announcement. Construction costs are estimated to be $800 million. The press release does not include details about the length or financial terms of the PPA.
In 2021 the South African government announced it had selected Project DAO among seven others to participate in the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producers Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP). The program was launched in response to the chronic short-term electricity supply gap affecting the country and its mining sector.
Meanwhile, the South African government trumpeted in August it had awarded project agreements to two wind-and-solar storage hybrid facilities as part of another RMIPPP round. The facilities are estimated to generate 203 MW of combined energy. Earlier this month the government announced it kicked off its most recent RMIPPP round calling for 1.8 GW of solar.
South Africa recorded 5.8 GW of installed solar capacity at the end of 2022, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
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