PAN African Resources said yesterday it had successfully commissioned a 10 megawatt solar photovoltaic (PV) plant at Evander Gold Mines, the first solar PV renewable energy plant of this capacity to be commissioned by a mining company in South Africa.
Built at a construction cost of R150 million, cost savings were estimated at R100 000 per day, or R3m a month at current electricity tariffs, with payback anticipated in under five years, a statement said.
The reduced use of fossil fuel-generated power consumption mean an expected reduction in C02 emissions saving of some 26 000 tons per annum, contributing to an estimated 5 percent reduction in group emissions.
A feasibility study on a further12MW expansion to power Evander underground organic growth projects was nearing completion, and construction was expected to start in the 2023 financial year.
An additional 8MW PV plant was expected to be constructed at Barberton Mines during the 2023 year, combined with an investigation into operational battery storage solutions.
Some 30MW of solar capacity was expected to be in operation by 2024 across the group assets, a statement said.