SunEdison will continue to pursue projects in South Africa following its award of an 86MW DC solar project in the fourth round of the country's Renewable Energy IPP Procurement Program (REIPPPP) as it looks to fill its emerging markets yieldco.
The Droogfontein 2 solar power plant will be located near Kimberly in the Northern Cape province. The 86MW capacity, enough to power 45,000 homes, represents 20% of the total allocated to preferred bidders in the auction organised by South Africa’s Department of Energy. South African national utility Eskom will purchase the solar energy under a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). SunEdison Services will perform operation and maintenance of the power plant.
SunEdison said it intends to offer the completed project to an emerging markets-focused yieldco that it said it planned to form in a previous announcement.
Enrique Collado, SunEdison general manager for Africa, said solar is the “perfect solution” to meet the country’s growing energy needs. It is now cost competitive with conventional fuels and can be brought online far more quickly than conventional power plants.
Collado added: “Solar power plants are easily scalable, making them the perfect solution to help alleviate South Africa's constrained power system. South Africa is one of the most attractive solar markets in the world, and we look forward to continuing to work with the Department of Energy in future rounds of the REIPPPP, which is expected to deliver an incremental 6.3GW of projects."
SunEdison has already installed 130MW of utility-scale solar capacity in South Africa since 2011.