Energy Minister Jeff Radebe PHOTO: Matthews Baloyi/ANA PHOTO
JOHANNESBURG - Enertrag SA (ESA), a subsidiary of German-based renewable energy company Enertrag, has concluded an agreement with Genesis Eco-Energy Developments that will see the two companies develop 1800MW of renewable energy.

Genesis director Davin Chown said the recent signing of power purchase agreements (PPAs) with independent power producers (IPPs) has spurred global energy companies to pursue local partners.

Chown said the signing of the PPAs with 27 IPPs has reinvigorated the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement (Reippp) programme.

“Now that the PPAs have been signed, there are a number of international companies that want to come to South Africa.

“They are looking for partners to co-develop projects in South Africa. They are willing to inject investments in this sector,” said Chown.

Genesis is a black-owned South African renewable energy company that has contributed to the development of 520MW of operational wind and solar photo-voltaic projects, and it has a pipeline of 2700MW from projects in sub-Saharan Africa.

Enertrag’s focus is on developing, owning and operating generation plants, storage systems and grid infrastructure.

Chown said Enertrag’s storage expertise attracted Genesis. “That is a major growth area for South Africa,” he said.

The lack of storage capacity is inhibiting the ability of renewable energy projects to supply electricity during peak consumption.

“The conclusion of the PPAs has provided much-needed relief and optimism in the industry. We are confident that, purely based on their superior economics, renewables will play a significant role in South Africa’s energy mix into the future,” said ESA country manager Zuben Jessa.

Chown said that, as part of the agreement, the two companies would pursue 12 renewable energy projects totalling 1800MW.

“There has been no time-frame set to the finalisation of those projects, but these will comprise projects in the Reippp, and bilateral contracts.”

He said the country’s industrial companies had an appetite for renewable energy.

“For such customers, we will develop and sell power on a willing buyer, willing seller basis. “We are seeing an increasing number of companies that want to augment their current source of electricity.”

- BUSINESS REPORT