Projects on the cards

Only two major wind farms are near completion, but many are in the pipeline, according to the Southern African Alternative Energy Association.

Darling Wind Farm, 70km north of Cape Town, is the first grid-connected, independent wind farm in South Africa. It has a 20-year power purchase agreement with the City of Cape Town and a power wheeling agreement with Eskom.

Designed for a total output of 5.2MW, it has been developed with financial assistance from the Danish government, the Development Bank of Southern Africa, the Central Energy Fund and the Darling Independent Power Producer.

Coega Wind Farm is the first commercial project. Built by Belgium’s Electrawinds, it provided energy for the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium during the 2010 World Cup. When its 25 turbines are completed, it will supply an average 45MW into the national grid for distribution by Nelson Mandela Bay municipality.

Planned commercial wind energy facilities in the Eastern Cape include:

  • Spitskop, near Riebeek East, proposed by Eastern Cape Province Renewable Energy Systems Southern Africa.

  • Amakhala Emoyeni: up to 350 turbines between Cookhouse and Bedford, by Windlab Developments South Africa.

  • Deep River, with a generating capacity of up to 100MW, located about 17km west of Humansdorp and proposed by VentuSA Energy.

  • Tsitsikamma community facility, with a capacity of up to 100MW, is proposed by Exxaro Resources and Watt Energy on a site about 30km west of Humansdorp.

Commercial wind energy facilities in the pipeline in the Western Cape include:

  • Exxaro West Coast Wind Farm, with up to 27 turbines providing 66MW, on land owned by Namakwa Sands, north-west of Vredendal.

  • Uyekraal, planned by Crenersol, located near Vredenburg.

  • Gouda, with up to 60 turbines and a generating capacity of about 120MW, is planned by VentuSA Energy about 1km north of Gouda.

  • Suurplaat, planned by Moyeng Energy, will have up to 400 wind turbines in the Laingsburg municipality (Western Cape) and the Karoo Hoogland municipality (Northern Cape).

This article originally appeared in the Mail & Guardian newspaper as an advertorial

Fiona Macleod

Fiona Macleod

Fiona Macleod is an environmental writer for the Mail & Guardian newspaper and editor of the M&G Greening the Future and Investing in the Future supplements. She is also editor of Lowveld Living magazine in Mpumalanga. An award-winning journalist, she was previously environmental editor of the M&G for 10 years and was awarded the Nick Steele award for environmental conservation. She is a former editor of Earthyear magazine, chief sub-editor and assistant editor of the M&G, editor-in-chief of HomeGrown magazines, managing editor of True Love and production editor of The Executive. She served terms on the judging panels of the SANParks Kudu Awards and The Green Trust Awards. She also worked as a freelance writer, editor and producer of several books, including Your Guide to Green Living, A Social Contract: The Way Forward and Fighting for Justice. Read more from Fiona Macleod

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