Eskom deals to power up private producers
ESKOM will sign power-purchasing deals with private producers next month, according to the spokesperson for Energy Minister Mmakoloko Kubayi.
This was agreed between Kubayi and Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown, Energy spokesperson Nomvula Khalo said.
“Based on the bids submitted the technical team came to a conclusion of negotiating the price to 77c a KWh,” Khalo said. “Eskom was part of the agreements and we do not foresee any challenges in implementing what was agreed by all.”
Eskom interim’s chief executive Johny Dladla last month reported additional plant availability, shifting the utility into surplus capacity.
Expansion of new generating capacity from Medupi, Ingula and Kusile power stations and a demanding fleet maintenance programme had allowed Eskom to improve plant availability from 69.9% in 2015 to 77.3% by the end of March.
With this in mind, Eskom national spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe said the number of independent power producers (IPPs) is expected to increase.
“About 90 contracts will be funded, already 64 IPPs have been funded by Eskom, and 26 more will be added.”
Since 2011, the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme has awarded 6 590 MW of renewable energy capacity to 102 independent power producers, of which at least 44 were already operational.
The entire programme will attract private sector investment worth R194bn in predominantly rural areas.
“These projects account for about R58.5bn in investments and the legal commitment to create over 13000 construction jobs,” the chief executive of the SA Wind Energy Association, Brenda Martin, said.