Africa’s largest solar farm goes live in SA

SolarReserve, a developer of utility-scale solar power projects, has announced that the 96 megawatt (MW) photovoltaic (PV) Jasper solar power project has completed construction and is fully operational.

The power project, located in South Africa’s Northern Cape, came online in October 2014, two months ahead of schedule, and is the largest solar installation on the continent.

The project also marks Google’s first renewable energy investment in Africa – the Internet search giant reportedly invested US$12 million into the solar park.

Jasper also includes the 75 MW Lesedi solar power project which came online in May, and the proposed 100 MW Redstone concentrated solar thermal power (CSP) plant..

The Jasper Project generated about 1 million man-hours during construction, peaking at over 800 on-site construction jobs, SolarReserve said.

With over 325,000 PV modules, it will deliver 180,000 megawatt-hours of renewable electricity annually for South Africa residents – enough to power up to 80,000 households through a 20-year power purchase agreement with SA power utility, Eskom.

The project was developed by a consortium consisting of SolarReserve, the Kensani Group, and Intikon Energy, a local developer of renewable energy projects.

Additional equity investment shareholders include the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), the PEACE Humansrus Community Trust, and SolarReserve with Rand Merchant Bank providing preference share equity.

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Africa’s largest solar farm goes live in SA