South Africa: REIPPPP Bid Window Round 5 to Open in December 2020

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  • Speaking to the to the joint sitting of Parliament on the country’s Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan yesterday, South Africa’s Mineral Resources and Energy Minister, Mr Gwede Mantashe said that his Department targets to deliver a total of sixteen thousand three hundred and thirteen megawatts (16 313 MW), from a mix of energy sources.
  • Request for Proposals will be issued in December 2020 to enable the opening of various bid windows, including Bid Window 5 of renewable energy.

The immediate initiatives include:

  • Procurement of two thousand megawatts (2000 MW) of emergency power to meet the short-term electricity supply gap. We issued a Request for Proposals and Bid Submissions are closing soon. Power procured will be fully operational and connected to the national grid by June 2022.
  • Procurement of eleven thousand eight hundred and thirteen megawatts (11 813 MW) from various energy sources: six thousand eight hundred megawatts (6 800MW) from renewables – PV and Wind), five hundred and thirteen megawatts (513 MW) from storage, three thousand megawatts (3 000 MW) from gas, and one thousand five hundred megawatts (1 500 MW) from coal. For this purpose, we Gazetted the Section 34 Ministerial Determinations with the intention to urgently connect new generation capacity to the national grid. Request for Proposals will be issued in December 2020 to enable the opening of various bid windows, including Bid Window 5 of renewable energy.
  • Issuing of the Request for Information (RFI) for two thousand five hundred megawatts (2 500MW) for the nuclear build programme. Responses from the market are currently being evaluated.

The Minister stated that the Department has also enabled ninety-seven megawatts (97 MW) of self-generation for own use,

  • through a Gazetted amendment of Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act, to exempt categories of generation facilities under one megawatt (1MW) and resellers from the requirement to hold a generation licence. NERSA has already registered one hundred and fifty-six (156) self-generation facilities under one megawatt (1MW) with a total installed capacity of seventy-two megawatts (72MW).
  • through effecting the provision for distributed generation in the IRP 2019 for facilities of one megawatt (1MW) and above, thereby removing the need for Ministerial approval for deviation from the IRP before NERSA can process a generation license application. To date, NERSA has approved five (5) applications with a total capacity of twenty-five megawatts (25MW).

Further, the Department has Gazetted amendments to Electricity Regulations on new generation capacity to enable municipalities in good financial standing to develop their own power generation projects. The amendments clarify the regime applicable to municipalities when requesting Determinations under Section 34 of the Electricity Amendment Act.

Recognising Eskom’s role in the electricity sector, Mantashe assured parliament that Government is working tireless to achieve significant systems improvement through the Eskom maintenance programme. Work is underway to achieve operational and financial stability at the entity. The process to separate and unbundle Eskom is progressing well in line with the Roadmap. These initiatives will complement efforts to secure energy supply for society.

Author: Bryan Groenendaal


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