- Pilanesberg Platinum Mines, a subsidiary of Sedibelo Platinum, has appointed the juwi/Sturdee Energy consortium as preferred bidder to supply renewable energy to the mining operation.
- The parties have signed a Memorandum of Understanding and will now commence negotiations towards a Power Purchase Agreement.
- Sturdee Energy will act as a joint developer and Independent Power Producer in these projects.
- juwi will act as joint developer, EPC contractor and O&M contractor in these projects.
The renewable energy programme will take the form of two projects. A Power Purchase Agreement for a combination of solar PV and wind systems to power the 40MW mine load via a wheeling arrangement from two separate sites, one in Limpopo and one in the Western Cape. This project will supply 55-60% of the mine’s energy needs, and is planned to commence operation in 2024.
The second is the development and construction of a 35MW solar plant at or adjacent to the mine for the direct provision of power to meet the mine’s growing energy needs, and is planned to commence operation in 2026.
Pilanesberg Platinum Mine is situated about 60km north west of Rustenburg on the western limb of the Bushveld complex. The mine currently produces about 120 000 ounces of PGMs in concentrate and has recently opened a second surface mine. Plans are under consideration to transition to underground mining in order to take advantage of higher- grade ores.
Sedibelo expects the renewable energy projects to reduce the mine’s carbon emissions by about 45% and result in significant cost savings. It will also reduce the mines exposure to Eskom’s grid.
“Sedibelo Platinum is pleased to be able to partner with two experienced and capable suppliers, and we are looking forward to the environmental and financial benefits that these projects will create. South Africa is indeed fortunate to have a good solar and wind resource, as well as companies that can deliver renewable projects in a fairly short timeframe,” said Sedibelo’s CEO, Erich Clarke.
Author: Bryan Groenendaal