South Africa: US $1.2bn wind power projects set for construction
Wind power projects amounting to US $1.2bn are set for construction in South Africa by Enel Green Power.
The Enel Group’s South African renewables company, signed with senior lenders Nedbank Limited and Absa all project financing agreements of up to 80% of the overall investment of around US $1.4bn on a portfolio of five new wind projects, totalling roughly 700 MW of capacity.
The five facilities set for construction, Nxuba, Oyster Bay, Garob, Karusa and Soetwater, have a capacity of around 140 MW each. TheEnel Group is contributing US $266m in equity in the construction of the five wind farms. Following the signing of the agreements, also known as “financial close”, construction of the first project, Nxuba, is expected to start by the end of 2018.
“We have reached an important milestone in South Africa by achieving financial close on five major wind projects which confirm our continuing commitment to the country’s renewables sector. Enel Green Power will be generating its emission-free energy in partnership with local shareholders and in cooperation with the local communities, according to our long-term vision of shared value creation,” Antonio Cammisecra, Head of Enel’s Global Renewable Energies Division Enel Green Power, commented.
The Garob, Karusa and Soetwater projects are in the Northern Cape, while the Oyster Bay and the Nxuba wind farms are in the Eastern Cape. Each project is minority-owned by a local partner.
Following the start of construction of Nxuba, construction of Oyster Bay and Garob is expected to start by the first half of 2019, with Soetwater and Karusa expected to start in the second half of 2019. Nxuba is expected to be operational in the second half of 2020, Oyster Bay in the first half of 2021, while Garob, Soetwater and Karusa in the second half of 2021.
By 2021, all five new wind farms are due to be operational, bringing Enel Green Power’s total installed capacity in the country to over 1.2 GW. Once operational, the five projects are expected to produce around 2.6 TWh each year, saving the annual emission of roughly 2.7 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere.