South Africa will procure 6.8GW of solar, wind power

Eskom will buy at least 6.8GW of solar and wind power from independent power producers from 2022, energy minister Gwede Mantashe said on Friday in the Government Gazette.

It was not immediately clear how Eskom, which is mired in a financial crisis and has struggled to keep the lights on over the past year, will fund the purchases.

In the announcement, Mantashe said the electricity “must be purchased by Eskom”.

The official announcement of the energy allocations also paves the way for opening of a long-awaited “Bid Round 5” under the government’s ambitious but delayed Renewable Energy IPP (Independent Power Producers) Procurement Programme.

“Six point eight gigawatts should be procured to be generated from renewable energy sources (PV and wind) … for the years 2022 to 2024,” Mantashe said. PV stands for photo-voltaic and refers to solar power.

The statement said 3GW would be purchased from gas-generated power and 1.5GW will be coal-generated.