Cape Town in big private push to permanently ditch load shedding

 ·17 Mar 2022

Cape Town mayor Geordin Hill-Lewis held meetings with 100 stakeholders from the independent power producer (IPP) sector this week as part of a push to ending load shedding in the city.

Hill-Lewis said the private sector will be key to securing Cape Town’s energy future, both through increasing the reliability of electricity supply to end load-shedding and making electricity more affordable for Capetonians and their businesses.

Cape Town plans to be at the cutting edge of municipal energy independence in South Africa. This included the first round of procurement of power from IPPs, the tendering process for which is ongoing, he said.

“Stakeholders were then given an opportunity to consult a panel of officials from the city, and also offer their ideas about what the city could do to reach its goal of reliable, affordable and clean energy for all Capetonians, as quickly and sustainably as possible.

“I look forward to continuing a dialogue with the sector as we work together towards energy security in Cape Town, harnessing the private sector’s innovation and efficiency for public good.”

Hill-Lewis has previously pledged that Cape Town will be the first load shedding-free city in South Africa.

In February 2022, the city opened its first round of procurement of power from independent power producers, issuing tenders to procure 300MW of additional renewable energy – much of which will be generated by solar photovoltaic (PV) plants.

A second tender for dispatchable generation projects over 20MW, which can be brought online in a short space of time, will follow this initial tender. Over time, the city will also procure much greater storage capacity to ensure the reliability of our supply and the integrity of our grid, he said.

“We will be considering proposals from IPPs for projects that will allow us to access an affordable and reliable electricity supply. We are particularly eager for proposals from IPPs that are able to help us eliminate our reliance on Eskom during peak times of use.”

“It is crucial to us that we are not only able to keep the lights on during off-peak times, but that we are able to supply households and businesses with electricity when they most need it. Reliable energy is critical for any thriving economy and that is what we will provide in Cape Town,” he said.

Read: Eskom gives load shedding and outages forecast for the next year

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